Can you remember the worst teacher you ever had?
There are a few individuals who sprang to my mind when I was trying to decide which one was the worst.
My Grade 1 Teacher
My Grade 1 teacher, Mrs Lickerfit (pretty sure that’s not how it was spelt, but that’s how it was pronounced) was a bit of a cow. How I wished I’d ended up in one of the other classes, with the sweet motherly teachers!
Every morning we had to stand up and say our name and address in front of the class, and every single time I would get into trouble. You see, she thought that because we went to Aspley East State School, we must all live in Aspley.
Except I didn’t. We actually lived in the next suburb over, which was Zillmere. So I got into trouble every single day for what seemed like months, until I gave up and just went with the flow. Amazing how this memory is still so clear to me nearly 50 years later!
Thankfully after that the vast majority of my teachers were great! Even the ones that had a reputation for being strict and mean seemed to like me.
Year 10 Maths Teacher
Maths has never been my best subject it’s true.
But partly I blame my Year 10 Maths teacher. I was doing Advanced Maths, and was doing okay thanks to a good teacher in Year 9.
But in Year 10 it all went downhill, when I had a different teacher. I just didn’t understand what was going on and ended up failing the subject, which led me to sign up for Maths in Society (or Vege Maths as we called it) in Year 11 and 12. The funny thing is that without even trying I came top in my Senior year! So I can’t help wondering if with a better teacher and a bit of encouragement in Year 10, I might have been ok with Maths 1.
Year 12 Theatre Teacher
But the worst teacher I ever encountered was in my Year 12 Theatre class, and she was a real bitch … to me anyway.
She was probably only about 7 years older than we were, and I vaguely remember people saying it was only her first or second year teaching. At first I thought she was cool – she was young, hip, and trendy.
Having already done Theatre in Year 11 (albeit with a different, and much nicer, teacher), I already knew it wasn’t my best subject and I wasn’t ever going to set the world alight with my dramatic abilities.
Still it was an interesting subject, until I realised that this teacher really didn’t like me. (I know! Something really wrong with her obviously 😉 )
It’s only natural that at times there will be a ‘personality clash’ between a teacher and student … and really, it’s up to the teacher, as the adult, to deal with it professionally. Sadly this is where Miss X was sadly lacking, and her attacks seemed very personal.
Here are just a couple of examples …
When I auditioned for a lead in the school musical, I passed the singing test with flying colours – but she was the judge when it came to our dramatic abilities, and she took a snide pleasure in telling me I couldn’t act. I will never forget looking at her, thinking “Lady, you have no freakin’ clue. I am acting EVERY. SINGLE. DAY“. Truth was, I came from an extremely dysfunctional and abusive household and the fact that I seemed so ‘normal’ was only due to my acting ability!!!
Later in the year, I became very ill with glandular fever right when the musical was being performed, and later she said something along the lines of, “Well it’s just as well we didn’t cast you” 🙁 .
Our Theatre class was split into two groups, with each to perform a one-act melodrama. In my group, we did a play called “Foiled by an Innocent Maid” and there was one more person in the group than parts – and you can guess who ended up the odd one out.
When I complained I was told to write my own part into the script, which I genuinely tried to do. I wrote in a character of a “bad/jealous maid” to contrast with the good/innocent maid. But it’s very hard to add a whole new character into an already existing storyline – and it seemed pretty pointless, particularly when the rest of the group charged on without me, learning the existing script.
One of our other projects that year was to work on a Documentary Drama, on a hot political issue. As a class, we created a stage show of short skits, musical acts, etc about the risks of the nuclear age – it was a lot of fun!
We came up with alternative lyrics to a popular rock song, and I was one of two back up singers. In our dress rehearsal, I was told to not sing as loudly as the other back up singer was too quiet. So I toned it down for the real performance (for other students at lunchtime), only to have Miss X snidely say afterwards, “I thought you were supposed to be able to sing, but I couldn’t even hear you.” I was so MAD!!!!!
Funnily enough, this same teacher loved my younger (more outgoing and confident) sister when she was in her class later on … I wonder if she even realised we were related!
What’s the worst teacher you’ve ever had, and why?!