A School Story
A School Story
Winter was around the corner and from the next week, we would have to change to our winter dresses for the remainder of the season. Now I don’t know about the girls, but we boys preferred the winter as we could play in the lunch break, games period, after school, and before the morning assembly without worrying about fatigue, weather, thirst, and the sweat-drenched clothes, which all were stuff related to the summer season. With the half-yearly exams and the nervy P.T.Ms behind us, we were stepping into the phase of the year that I always associated with naughtiness. The main reason for this was the overflow of energy bursting through our young and growing bodies, and the increased notorious activities that we had to do to keep warm in the winters.
But back then, in the 8th class, we didn’t expect the season to be so thrilling and full of fun. One day, all of a sudden, our class teacher bought six men, all in their mid-20s, and announced that they would teach us for the next complete month, replacing our regular teachers for the majority of the time period. At that time, we didn’t understand what was happening, and to be honest, we didn’t care much. Later on, after a year of the ‘most glorious month’ of our secondary school life gone in the past, I asked a teacher who those guys were and she told me that they were on their way to becoming teachers, and, to do so, they had to go through practical sessions with the students.
My demands from school life as a boy were quite simple. Firstly, I needed constant good marks to keep the pressure from my parents and relatives in check. Secondly, a hell lot of friends to chill and enjoy. Thirdly, a cute girl as a crush, so that I could have some of that Bollywood romance in my real life, and lastly, I wanted all the teachers to be absent more which would lead to more free periods so that we could plead with our class teacher and convert these into games periods. Now, these demands may seem to be a lot, but compare them with a decent phone, fit body, hot girlfriend, healthy income/pocket money, a good collection of clothes, a stable future, supporting friends and family, and more, and you will get the picture. I mean I don’t know what goes wrong once we grow up because we even need time for everything. Like seriously? Time? We don’t have time for family, friends, hobbies, passion, travel, etc. We don’t even have the time to self-introspect. I’ve seen some people blindly choose to study a subject they hated since childhood and then break down after being 3-4 years deep into it. Now 3-4 years is a long long time and that’s one saddening thing to hear. Most of us don’t even know what we really want to do, and the majority of us don’t even try.
Anyways, back to the incident, the first day was quite a test, for both the teachers as well as the students. Eventually, things got smoother with time as we grabbed the opportunity with both our hands and shook all the fun we could from the next month. The lesser age difference between the training teachers and us acted as the agent of chaos in this situation. We didn’t respect or fear them because they didn’t look old enough to be someone with authority, and they didn’t scream at us or punish us because I think they didn’t believe they had the right to do so. Seeing this handicap of a situation, we first started talking in between lectures, paying lesser attention to them, and more to out trivial desk games and sports chit chat. From there, we moved on to having fun with the training teachers and bunking some of their lectures. Eventually, we were so out of control that I remember some days when we spent more time on the playground and less time in the class.
Those who were appointed to teach us also didn’t take any interest in making us pay attention or restricting our notorious actions. I believe they were just waiting for the month to end so that they could quickly step into the ‘stable lifeworld’ with fine salaries and a hell lot of holidays at hand. On the days when bunking was hard, I noticed in the classes that these teachers didn’t even look interested in the topics they were teaching us. And if I or someone else came up with a doubt, it would be ignored or hushed some way or the other most of the time. That’s why we used to associate all of them with our SST teacher, Ankit Sir. He came to class every day and either told a student to read the chapter aloud or told us to keep quiet and mind our own business until the lecture finished.
Now I can easily imagine the training teachers sitting in the teacher’s chair just waiting for the bell to ring as the students of that fancy school, equally uninterested in the subject, somehow find a way to pass the time quietly. It is in situations like these when my mind wanders off, thinking about how the “system” everybody praises are really functioning. The only thing we all are sure about is that education isn’t knowledge anymore. Far away from all the chaos, fun, and confusion of that time, all my school days, college semesters, and the 3 hours examinations bombard my brain as I stand near the gate of the school I’m designated to, and I don’t know why, but the only thought occupying my mind is “If just this month would pass somehow”…………………………..