Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Young Girls

Tonight in my Junior High School class we were reading mini-narratives in our textbooks. These short blurbs detailed the lives of adolescents in different cultures, and were accompanied by a picture of the teenager next to the paragraph about them.

Mid-way through the story of "Adriana" from Rio de Janeiro, one of my students interrupted. "Nate sensei," she asked. "Which one is ichiban..." she struggled for the words.

"Do you need help with number one?" I asked, pointing towards the questions at the bottom of the page.

"No," she said, grasping for the English. "Which one, for you, is number one cute?" I paused, still not sure what she meant.

Then she exasperatedly pointed to the picture of young Adriana and her 2 friends. The accompanying text began with "My name is Adriana. I am thirteen and I live in Rio de Janeiro..."

"Uhhhh, none" I said. My student seemed shocked. "None???" She exclaimed, not seeming to grasp the incredible creepiness of her question. She quickly flipped over to another page with another 12-14 year old girl. "What about she?"

"No, not cute. Not number one cute."

She turned to another page, now suspicious. She pointed at the square-jawed male protagonist in the detective story at the end of the book. "Him?" she asked accusingly, then burst out into fits of emasculating laughter, which continued for a good five minutes.

All in all, not a huge boost for my "rep" tonight.


Sam said...

You should have told her that she was your only number one cute. That would have washed away all the creepiness from the situation.

Nate said...

Uncle Sam's Daycare! Rest assured, parents, there won't be any weirdos lurking outside the playground fence--because we've got them all on staff!

Tom said...

Chuugakuseis. Teaching them convinced me that I would not be happy with a future in teaching. My hat is off to junior high school teachers aroud the world.