Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Flashback to Junior High

I love it when another blogger triggers a long forgotten memory. Today, it was Erin's post on school projects. While I have wiped my memory of much of my school days, I have to say a few moments truly stand out.

My English teacher in 9th grade required that we all do a book report on a biography. At the beginning of the term, we all had to pick a historical figure to read about. Once we had completed the book, however, she switched up the assignment. No simple book report for us, oh no. I began to tremble as my fear of public speaking asserted itself...please no oral report I prayed, please please please.

Well, my prayer was answered....sort of.

Instead of an oral report we were required to partner with someone else in the class. We would each dress AND act as the subject of our biography while our partner would act as a journalist conducting an interview. To improve upon this hideous assignment even further, it would be videotaped. I can only assume it was to be added to that mysterious "permanent file" to be pulled out and laughed at for all future generations of teachers and administrators.

I? was Mary Queen of Scots. All I remember about this assignment was putting a lace curtain on my head as part of the costume. I have blanked out the rest. But worse than my situation was another scary biography. Someone in my class had actually selected Hitler. And this someone actually found (or maybe made??? it's very fuzzy) a flag complete with swastika.

I guess in the overall scheme of things it was somewhat creative of our teacher to go this direction. It certainly meant we needed to understand our historical figures and almost literally put ourselves in their shoes...but I still classify it as cruel and unusual torture.


Anonymous said...

Actually, what probably happened to that videotape was that the teacher stuffed it into the cupboard, where it lay forgotten till they retired ten years later. Then the new teacher in that room, while cleaning out that cupboard, unearthed it and because they could no longer decipher the label, they had good intentions of watching it to see if it was worth saving. So it was placed in the "to do" pile and languished there for the rest of the school year. That new teacher ended up throwing it out in June.

Not that I would know anything about such a situation ...

Chelle said...

i have no recollection of that!