02 March 2006


Today I had a rather not-so-good experience. An experience that made me doubt myself.

In the afternoon, after my classes, a fellow graduate student from East Asia approached me and asked for help for the homework that was due a week ago. Apparently, he was having some problems in solving them so the professor gave him an extension for the submission.

So I gladly did help him. I tried my best to explain what the concepts are and what they meant. But still he had a hard time understanding the concepts. I had to repeat what I was saying, and embarassingly enough, another graduate student came in and said that my voice could be heard as far as the elevator, that I was yelling at him.

Is it the language barrier? Is it because he is not so proficient in English? Or is it that I am not so good in expressing my thoughts? The episode just drained me that I discreetly told him that I needed to be somewhere after six (thus shortening the encounter to last just one hour). He even asked where I would be after my appointment (because he thought that I am meeting someone at six). So I frankly told him that I need to study for my own as well.

I feel like I was rude. I also have this sense that I am not an effective teacher. If I cannot handle a single person like him, then how would I be able to teach?


  1. nakaka-relate ako. minsan kapag tinuturuan ko si esmi mag-computer nagiinit din ulo ko kasi para sa akin madali lang pero sa kanya mahirap. kaya ayun ayaw na niyang magpaturo sa akin.

  2. Don't fret too much. Maybe, the problem's not with you but with the person. There are things that are beyond your control. Nothing can't be done about them. Just keep your cool. You're just okay.

  3. It was probably just a slighly awkward stellar alignment. You know, those tiny little things no-one really can do anything about. It happens. Getting over it with good faith is what separates the men from the boys, so just live and accept that you can't score 100% ad infinitam.

    Putting less pressure on oneself has the handy side-effect of actually achieving better results most of the time.

  4. I agree, don't fret too much. Live nad learn and it'll get better as time goes on, perhaps...

  5. Don't worry. Sometimes a pupil needs more time for digesting the informations. And don't feel pressed. It's better to ask him tomorrow or in some days again if he understands now the issue.

  6. sometimes the best of teachers and the best of students, just can't figure eacother out. This isn't your 'fault', you should relax. This is just what it is, an unconrolled moment in time that you can learn from. Don't be so hard on yourself. Some people will not be able to learn from your style.. you just need to learn to pick up and that and realize that it's just a learning habbit, not you personally. :)
    Cheer up, I am sure you are a fantastic teacher.