What Most People Use Facebook For (Sorry)

This post is meant to be more helpful to me than to you all. There are two parts.

Part One. Frustrations. 

To some of the students who visit me:

  • Yes. I am free to help you. You do not need to ask. This is my job. What is your question?
  • The answer I was looking for to the question “How may I help you?” is not “I have a few math questions.” I am the math tutor. That is why you are talking to me. Can you be a little more specific please? Algebra? Trig? Infinite series?
  • On that subject, if you don’t have a question, then I probably don’t know how to help you. Find a problem that you don’t understand and bring it to me. I am not the living breathing Cliff Notes for Basic Statistics and I’m not going to study for your final for you by giving you a brief overview of the entire course in 15 minutes.
  • The phrase “Sorry, I’m in a rush, the test is in two hours,” and other derivatives in no way makes me want to talk faster or feel hurried. Come to me seven days ago and I’ll struggle with the material with you gladly up to the last minute.
  • Although I am here to help you, do not beckon me to your table with your finger. I am a person and I have a name. “Hey, Taylor, could I have some help, please?”
  • Do you realize that when you complain that you have a hard time understanding my Chinese co-worker or that he takes a long time to explain you are complaining about one of my friends? He speaks your language fluently and his explanations are longer because he wants to give you context so that you understand. Be patient and think about why you are so quick to give up on understanding him.
  • It’s okay if your question isn’t “quick”. And it won’t be, so don’t lie to me. That’s my least favorite adjective for a question in a learning environment outside of “dumb”.
  • Every third student says to me “I’m gonna be your toughest case.” I doubt it.
  • Do you realize that “Hi, I’m really bad at math,” isn’t a very pleasant way to start a conversation?
  • Although I love to see the students that I help go and help others, interrupting me during a tutoring session and then confusing the student I am helping with your explanation isn’t just unhelpful, it’s a little rude.

Part Two. Attitude Adjustment.

To myself, every time I have one of those thoughts:

  • Yes. I am free to help you. You do not need to ask. This is my job. What is your question?  They are being polite and you should be grateful for the courtesy they show if you are indeed busy.
  • The answer I was looking for to the question “How may I help you?” is not “I have a few math questions.” I am the math tutor. That is why you are talking to me. Can you be a little more specific please? Algebra? Trig? Infinite series?If you want a more specific answer, ask a more specific question. They can’t read your mind and it doesn’t matter if you think they should know that wasn’t what you were asking.
  • On that subject, if you don’t have a question, then I probably don’t know how to help you. Find a problem that you don’t understand and bring it to me. I am not the living breathing Cliff Notes for Basic Statistics and I’m not going to study for your final for you by giving you a brief overview of the entire course in 15 minutes. Sometimes a student might need to see “the big picture”, but don’t let them think you are there as a replacement for class or effort on their part.
  • The phrase “Sorry, I’m in a rush, the test is in two hours,” and other derivatives in no way makes me want to talk faster or feel hurried. Come to me seven days ago and I’ll struggle with the material with you gladly up to the last minute. Don’t get frustrated. They might just have a few clarifying questions and they might be stressed by the exam.
  • Although I am here to help you, do not beckon me to your table with your finger. I am a person and I have a name. “Hey, Taylor, could I have some help, please?” If you don’t want people to do that to you, tell them and not your blog, knucklehead.
  • Do you realize that when you complain that you have a hard time understanding my Chinese co-worker or that he takes a long time to explain you are complaining about one of my friends? He speaks your language fluently and his explanations are longer because he wants to give you context so that you understand. Be patient and think about why you are so quick to give up on understanding him. And you don’t speak up and defend your co-worker instead of staring at them silently because….?
  • It’s okay if your question isn’t  “quick”. And it won’t be, so don’t lie to me. That’s my least favorite adjective for a question in a learning environment outside of “dumb”. Sometimes they are quick questions and they just want to communicate that they aren’t trying to be a bother. They don’t know that “quick question” is one of your pet peeves. Besides, quit complaining about pet peeves. They’re pet peeves.
  • Every third student says to me “I’m gonna be your toughest case.” I doubt it. Every third is a gross exaggeration and you know it. They have low self-confidence and math-anxiety. Build them up and encourage them. Don’t dismiss their apprehension.
  • Do you realize that “Hi, I’m really bad at math,” isn’t a very pleasant way to start a conversation? Same story as above.
  • Although I love to see the students that I help go and help others, interrupting me during a tutoring session and then confusing the student I am helping with your explanation isn’t just unhelpful, it’s a little rude. Have patience and help them both. You can teach the one and help train the other at the same time.

Thanks for letting me get that off my chest.

Other frustrations include wanting to format this post differently but giving up after fighting the WordPress editor for 30 minutes.

 

Advertisements
Standard

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s