Day 13: More Words Of Wisdom from Mr C

The future hides in it gladness and sorrow; We press still through; Nought that abides in it Daunting us, - Onward!
by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe born 28 August 1749 – 22 March 1832)  a German poet, playwright, novelist, scientist, statesman, theatre director, critic, and amateur artist

To dream a dream is to live between two worlds. For me, I was in a hurry to learn what I needed to know, so I could focus on the writing. I wasn’t getting any younger as I was heading towards another milestone in my life. My frustration was not knowing whether I had the right amount of knowledge, as far as grammar went, to carry on without completing the course.

I reasoned that the college would not have employed teachers who weren’t qualified, would they? I was in limbo over whether it was worth carrying on, and hoped at some point things would get better. I had always believed knowledge can be found in the most unexpected places. The old saying about Learning something new everyday was true, even if it is something new about yourself. I wondered whether I had enough courage to complain.

As far as Mr C went, I discovered his teaching skills were like putting a jigsaw puzzle together without a picture and not even being sure you had all the right pieces. Was I really learning enough from his erratic teaching to be able to slot the piece together for myself?

All I could do was hope at some point it would all make perfect sense to me.

Photo by Sharon Snider on

Day 13 Back to College From my time as a mature student. A new year 2007

After the heavy snow two weeks ago, and half-term school break, I was looking forward to returning to my evening class.

Why? You might well ask…

Well, to start with I thought I might learn something useful to help me improve my writing. But thanks to good old Mr C, all I can say is one has to question the logic behind the college’s reason for employing him.  Please can someone tell me how did that man become a teacher?

He was back to his old tricks again. Once again to his class of three, he read out a worksheet he had printed off the internet about ‘Present Perfect’.

It made no sense to any of us, especially with his added waffle. In the end, I asked him to explain to us how it worked and which words were the verbs etc. After he hunted for a pen, he wrote down this down on the board:
1st PS: I have you have
3rd He, She, It/ has
We have
you have
They have
Verbs: have been saw seen forgive forgiven.

Yes, I know… dear readers, you might understand it, but it made no sense to us.  To learn, you need to understand and Mr C didn’t seem to understanding that his style of teaching was leaving his students very confused that we had no understanding of what he was teaching.

Here are some more of Mr C examples:

An Uncompleted Action You are Expecting: We often use the Present Perfect to say that an action which we expected has not happened. Using the Present Perfect suggests that we are still waiting for the action.

James has not finished his homework (yet)

Mr C said we didn’t need the word yet because we knew that James would finish his homework at some time.

I said, ‘ It made more sense by adding the word Yet as that was the word which told you he would finish it at some time.

Susan hasn’t mastered Japanese, but she can communicate.
Again, Mr C said this sentence told us that sometime in the future Susan would master Japanese.

To me, the sentence told me ‘Susan hasn’t mastered Japanese, but she was able to communicate in whatever way she could so maybe she didn’t need to learn Japanese after all.

Bill has still not arrived.
Mr C said, “If we took out ‘still’ we would know that Bill will arrived at some time.”

I wasn’t convinced as still told us there was a good chance Bill would arrive at some point come. If you remove still everyone would assume he wasn’t coming.

Next week, Mr C will be showing us how to write poetry. I can’t wait…
Right, now down to some real studying… I’ll just do some more of my ‘Collins Cobuild intermediate English Grammar’ exercises form the book I bought as this is far more helpful to me.

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