The Time I Got In Trouble For Studying In Class

This is from lyl, who can’t actually think of any yetzer hara she has that is greater than her yetzer hara for doing well on tests. 

 

I was sitting in the back of the classroom in “Da Ma SheTashuv” class (“Know What to Answer an Apikores” class — that’s another story in itself) flipping through flashcards, preparing for my upcoming Chumash test.

The teacher, flowing up and down the aisles as she speaks, catches me, and pauses to glare. “What’s that?” she asks.

It turns out that when teachers ask “What’s that?” they actually mean, “Put that away.” It’s a rhetorical question, and if you are dumb enough to answer it, you risk getting kicked out of class. (That happened to me.) You’re supposed to look ashamed, mumble an apology, and shove the offending item away as quickly as possible without making eye contact. But I hadn’t caught on to this yet, so I said “Flashcards. For studying.”

She glared at me, at which point I mumbled an apology and shoved the offending items away as quickly as possible without making eye contact.

“You can learn a lot about a person from their yetzer hara,” she observed.

“Studying Chumash?” I clarified. It wasn’t exactly my most pressing yetzer hara, but I would take the credit for it.

Later, the grade mechanechet pulled me out to discuss this incident in classroom management. It had merited being shared, I guess, because it involved more than one teacher. In this case, the mechanechet informed me, the Chumash teacher should perhaps get involved, and deduct points from my forthcoming test.

“For studying?” I squeaked. This seemed a bit much.

And it was, because it never happened. It was just an empty threat, like so many of them were.

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The Time I Got In Trouble For Studying In Class

4 thoughts on “The Time I Got In Trouble For Studying In Class

  1. DF3 says:

    Don’t you find it hilarious that דע מה שתשיב לאפיקורות is taught to girls when they’re not allowed to learn g’mara? What else of their religion are these girls kept from?If they are taught that girls aren’t “supposed to” learn one of the great treasure troves of knowledge of their religion that includes a lot of stories of actual debates about the issues an “apikores” might bring, why would they ever be inclined to learn much more than they have to beyond Shabbos afternoon shiurim for women in Pirkei Avos?

    How could they possibly be equipped to really discuss their religion in great depth when Bais Yaakov prepares them to be Jewish wives and mothers, and, from what I understand from this blog and elsewhere, not much much else? How much are they taught to challenge their teachers? How equipped are the teachers to take on challenges? It’d be funny if it weren’t so sad.

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    1. > Don’t you find it hilarious that דע מה שתשיב לאפיקורות is taught to girls when they’re not allowed to learn g’mara?

      I don’t know. It’s not taught to boys, and the yeshivish meachtas aren’t exactly heavy on theology.

      BTW, if anyone still has their notes from their “Know What to Answer an Apikores class,” I’d love to see them.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Alex says:

        True, theology* is not taught to boys in most schools as a subject, nor does it really come up all that much in the other stuff they learn. However, learning Gemara for a bunch of years does (or should) develop certain skills that would make it possible (and enjoyable) for them to learn theology on their own.

        (Ignore the comma if you want a double entendre.)

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