Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Oops... Not Quite the Word He Intended...

Today in class, I asked the students to imagine their ideal school. Private, public, big, small, boarding, day... Large classes or tutorials, project-based learning or papers and tests, internships or traditional programs... 

One student looked up with a big grin on his face and declared that his dream school would be filled with "energetic and foxy teachers!"

Hmm.

I almost disciplined him for inappropriate language, for not taking the assignment seriously... but then I asked him to explain what he meant.

Good thing I did! He thought that "foxy" meant "clever"! I'm glad he didn't use that word with the Oxford University examiners!

17 comments:

Tina in CT said...

Maybe he meant that you were foxy with both meanings.

Tami said...

Hehehee! I think he was calling you Foxy! :)

MoscowMom said...

That might have been the case twelve years ago -- when my student in question was 3 -- when I first started teaching, wore a size 6 and was asked to the prom by a junior who didn't realize I was a teacher... Now? Uh, no. The Russian girls in my eleventh grade class are smart, sweet and so darn pretty...

Tina in CT said...

Remember the first year that you were teaching and you were in the hallway with your students and the principal came by and reprimanded you to get back in line?

Looking young is a blessing.

The Expatresse said...

Once, many, MANY years ago, while teaching English in Taiwan, I asked a group of new students to pick an adjective that starts with the same letter as their first name. Eagerly, Simon picks "sexual." Except he mispronounces his own English name as "see-mon."

It took me a long time to regain my self control and gently correct his pronunciation.

Francie said...

Wow, I'm pretty impressed that he used the word "foxy" to mean clever! I would've thought what you thought, that he was meaning "hot"!

Annie said...

How funny. Maxim frequently uses words just a bit wrong. For example he said he was going to "play a prick on my teacher". It took me a moment to realize he wasn't being rude on purpose.

Annie said...

Your and your mom's story about looking young reminded me of the day when I was a) 30 years old and b) 8 months pregnant. OK; I did have my hair in braids, but - come on! A salesman came to the door and asked for my mother!

Anonymous said...

similar thing happend to me, as well, annie - i was 30 and probably 8 months pg and i walked by a group of older women at a store who started commenting on teenagers having babies!! i was offended at first, esp that they would comment so loudly, but then i just laughed - i was 30, married 3 years, etc ; )

miss you, tamara!
jeannie

Tina in CT said...

Annie and Jeannie,

Love your stories.

When I was pregnant and living in Berkeley, I retained water and puffed up and couldn't wear my wedding rings as my pregnancy advanced. I was so paranoid about going out with my rings as I thought everyone would think I was a pregnant, unwed teenager (and I was almost 25 and married).

Tina in CT said...

Jeannie,

With my mouth, I would have turned around and set those women straight and how!

MamaPoRuski said...

Of course he meant it in the BEST sense of the word! I can only imagine how much humor our Russian speaking friends get out of our practicing our Russian too! We had our friends over from Ukraine this weekend and had to explain what a "lazy Susan" was and how it came to be called that...

MoscowMom said...

Jeannie and Annie (and Mom) --

That happened to me, too! People thought I was some unwed teen, too! I wore overalls from the Gap quite often while pregnant with my Birkenstocks... I couldn't wear my wedding rings, either...

I remember some comments between ladies that weren't exactly kind, and a few times I did say, "Excuse me, I'm 28 and married..." More often than not, however, I got such disapproving looks...

By the time i was halfway along, however, I was so incredibly huge that I no longer look quite teen-ish and the comments stopped... Tee hee, I'll never forget how shocked my mom looked when she saw me for the first time since getting pregnant at 7 months... UTTER disbelief...

MoscowMom said...

I love your comment, Expatresse! I have students mispronounce the name Simon, too... It's worse when it's mispronounced by the Simons themselves! Both at the school I was at last year and the new school this year I have Simons in class...

Wish I could let them know WHY it would behoove them to pronounce their names differently in English, but I just can't do it... It would be so embarrassing for them...

Anonymous said...

annie and tina and tamara - i am cracking up right now with pg stories ; ) i couldn't wear my wedding rings either while pg, and just now can and the baby is 18 months old! the weight gain was "funnier" the first time around b/c it was all so new, but the second time was more distressing. i am finally losing weight now though - 14 lbs since colorado ; ) so, i look more like i did in moscow when i was skinny b/c there wasnt fast food on every street corner ; )

miss you!
jeannie

katbat said...

I overheard my kids chatting after school the other day (they are 8 and 6).
"Do you know what a "hot babe" is?"
"I think it is a fancy lady, like mom. Maybe mom is a hot babe."
"Mom, are you a "hot babe"?"
my reply (I am 9 months pregnant) "yes, son, I think I may be a hot babe, thanks for asking."

hee hee!

garnet said...

Not fair! I want some entertaining comments in essays. All I get is boring terrible grammar.