Friday, August 20, 2010

Murphy's Laws for Teachers/Students - A Murphy Wiki to Start the Year?

Sometimes levity is needed at the start of a new school year. In the past I have posted more serious "words of wisdom" but I'm in a more whimsical mood right now. Besides, I haven't posted anything for awhile, so here goes...  

Here are a couple of my own Murphyisms I just  posted on Twitter:

Murphy's Law for SAT Students: Running out of time on the last section of Math, you desperately guess C,C,C,C,C,C for last 6 answers. Of course, the correct answers turn out to be B,A,D,B,A,D.

Murphy's Law for Trig Students: You confidently apply the mnemonic "SAHCOHTAO" to your first major unit test!

A selection of my favorites from the wonderful Murphy's Laws site:

For Teachers

The problem child will be a school board member's son.

Students who are doing better are credited with working harder. If children start to do poorly, the teacher will be blamed

The school board will make a better pay offer before the teacher's union negotiates.

Personal note: Been there, done that! Here's my own version when I was non-tenured:
As we were picketing, my poster read "We've lowered our demands -- now up yours!" Which one would you guess got picked up by local newspapers...

Law of Universal Intelligence:
The most ill-behaved student in all of a teacher's classes is always one of the bright ones he can't flunk.

For Students

  • If you study hard for that important examination, the focus of the exam will be 'thinking-based' and 'analytical'.
    Corollary: If you memorized information, it will be useless.
  • If you don't study for that important examination, the paper will be content-based.
    Corollary: If you don't study, every question will appear to be something you remember reading on your textbooks from a month ago, hence will appear (deceptively of course) easy, although you will not recall the exact phrasing of an answer.
The more studying you did for the exam, the less sure you are as to which answer they want

Eighty percent of the final exam will be based on the one lecture you missed about the one book you didn't read.


"All Truth passes through Three Stages: First, it is Ridiculed... Second, it is Violently Opposed... Third, it is Accepted as being Self-Evident." - Arthur Schopenhauer (1778-1860) 

 You've got to be taught To hate and fear, You've got to be taught From year to year, It's got to be drummed In your dear little ear You've got to be carefully taught. --from South Pacific

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