Number one for English language teachers

Anecdote: Competing with the students

Type: Anecdote

A cautionary tale about why you should never play computer games in class, from Ghassan Hasan

I still remember the first day in one private school in Jordan. It was a funny experience for me.

I was interested and enthusiastic to teach English to adults students. It was a listening class where I have to take the students to the computer lab. I took the key from the principal and informed him that we had a listening class. In the lab as usual I started with an introduction on how to use the computer. A little while later I noticed that two students were not paying any attention to me. I went to see what was going on. I was surprised to find that they were playing racing games: - The two students were staring horrified, so I decided not to scold them and take it easy.

I started playing the game and asked one of them to join the challenge for two laps. At this moment the whole class gathered around us and started backing-me-up saying:

'TEACHER! TEACHER! TEACHER!'

Their sounds were too loud but I couldn't recognized that because of my full concentration on the game. Before I crossed the finishing line there was a silence, then I jumped happily in the air saying:

'YES! I DID IT! I WON THE RACE!'

I turned my back to see the principal staring with rounded eyes at me. I didn't know what to say. I was embarrassed then he said,

'What an efficient listening class.'

After the class he called me at his room and started blaming me for what I had done, my face totally red.

This was unforgettable event in my teaching experience.

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