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“Ah-Ha!” Moment Faked

By George Minkowski
There is nothing worse than asking a question, not having it answered, and then being asked if you get it. In this uncomfortable situation, most students might casually lie or drop the course on the spot. However, some students will fake their understanding by emitting an audible “Ah-Ha,” thus saving themselves from prolonged and unnecessary learning.
Richard Brown found himself in this situation Monday in his 8th period Pre-Calculus class. He raised his hand to ask a question about inverse-somethings, and the teacher’s response only clouded his abysmal understanding.
“I really didn’t get it,” Richard says. “And I still don’t get it, but at least the class doesn’t think I’m an idiot.”
Richard’s act was apparently very effective. “It was probably the best work I’ve done in that class all year,” he adds. “I said little things like, ‘Oooh! I got it now. Because like— I got it!’ and ‘that totally makes sense. You’re such a great teacher.’”
Shortly after this pseudo-“Ah-Ha!” moment, Richard wrote in his assignment notebook “Learn what the H-E-Double Hockey Sticks is going on in Pre-Calc. Also, bring in tissue box for English.”
However, Ms. Raymond, Richard’s teacher didn’t notice this. She was too busy enjoying the euphoria that “Ah-Ha!” moments cause teachers. “I just love it when it clicks with a student,” Ms. Raymond reports. “It’s what keeps me going. [Sigh]”
However, several students in the class were actually annoyed by this and found Richard’s “Ah-Ha” moment to be ostentatious and condescending. These students do have some reason to be annoyed, considering Richard’s little show cost the class three minutes of their time and ended up costing Richard the admiration of the cute girl who sits behind him who really liked his ‘terrible at math’ persona.
Hopefully, Richard will have a legitimate “Ah-Ha!” moment before his parents have a chance to see his report card because the method-acting method of learning math isn’t really panning out too well. Method-acting method of learning math. Get it. I’ll give you a second.
“Oooh! Ah-Ha! That’s clever,” say people reading this article.

November 21, 2009

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