The class in question had the reputation of being the worst class in the school. They were rowdy, rude, repugnant, never interested in any lesson and every teacher cringed at the thought of taking the class last lesson on a Friday.
It was the lot of the beginning teacher to be given a class such as this partly as no one else wanted them and partly as a way of finding out what the new teacher would do with them. After all he came from the University full of ideals and ideas.
So the young teacher did battle with them every day. He planned lessons, made up games, took them out of the room to give them lessons in the fresh air. Nothing worked and they simply took advantage of his age and his inexperience.
The school Principal didn’t like him anyway and saw the class as providing him with the ticket to get rid of him. The Principal didn’t want new ideas in his school, he wanted the old fashioned chalk and talk, the rigid discipline, lots of rote and homework.
After six months with what could only be described as chaos the Principal called the young teacher in and said to him that is was obvious the class was not being controlled during his lessons and if there was no improvement he would call in the School Inspector to assess his viability of staying on as a teacher in the school.
Of course nothing improved, the class got worse, they ran in and out of the room, they drew on the walls, they made the young teachers life hell.
So one day in the third term the Inspector of Schools arrived to assess the young teachers progress. The young teacher knowing his future was on the line made every effort to plan the best lessons he could and the worst class was afforded the most time having all sorts of things to keep them interested.
Knowing the first issue he always had was getting them into their seats he decided to take on a strong arm approach. If nothing else it might frighten them into submission, if only temporarily.
The day arrived and the young teacher took the Inspector with him to the class. Normally the class would be in the room running amok by now. Today to the young teachers surprise they were lined up outside the room in two straight lines awaiting his instruction to enter the room.
On entering the room, they sat in their seats, took their books out and sat attentively as he began the lesson. Not a work was spoken out of place, hands shot up when he asked questions. The young teacher was in a form of shock himself.
The lesson went wonderfully well and every lesson that week went the same way with the Inspector sitting in the back of the room watching and making notes during every lesson.
By weeks end the Inspector reported to the Principal that the found no fault with the young teacher and in fact he thought he was one of the best teachers he had ever seen.
He left a happy man, the Principal was flabbergasted. He delivered the Inspectors report to the young teacher and said that he was pleased there had been such a change in the young teacher’s relationship with the problem class.
The next Monday the young teacher full of enthusiasm and excitement over his glowing report went to class with renewed determination. To his dismay the class was its normal unruly self.
He called for attention, yelled and screamed at them to be quiet and was very angry at their return to their old ways. When he asked them why they had behaved as they had when the Inspector was there they replied:
“We like you sir and we weren’t going to let you down.”