In my second year of high school, I had a new mathematics teacher. The teacher was new at the school and knew very little about the students in the class. I was particularly weak in mathematics and everyone in my class knew it. I guess the whole school knew how a poor mathematics student I was as the previous teacher was good at making my weakness known to everyone including those people who werent concerned with me. I felt she had a particular hatred towards me and found immense pleasure in embarrassing me. Mathematics classes were a nightmare for me. (S)
My new math teacher was tall, handsome and jovial. He was eloquent as he introduced himself to the class and assured us that he was there to assist us to get the best grades possible. He was different from the previous teacher in almost all aspects. Firstly, he was a man, but he also seemed the type not to celebrate someones failure. Even so, the fact that it was still a mathematics class made me uneasy. (CC) I saw it as the same challenge just that it had different players and scenes.
The class started immediately after the introduction. He was more focused on teaching and making us understand math more than anything else. (ED) To my surprise, for the first time in high school, as far as I could remember, I found myself listening and concentrating in a mathematics class. He had a different approach to teaching whereby he required someone to solve a math problem after he taught. The time to solve a problem in front of everyone in class came. He requested a volunteer to go ahead and do it on the whiteboard. Everyone in class except me had their hands up trying to get a chance to be the first to impress the new teacher. He looked around and noticed I had not raised my hand. Slowly he walked towards where I sat, held my hand and said that I will be the one to solve it. At that moment, I wished that the earth would open up and swallow me. The other students laughed loudly and started shouting that I should do it. The positive reaction of the teacher in my defense from the embarrassment did not take away my fear. He insisted that I must solve it though he was angered by the scornful noise made by the students. (CX) As I walked towards the whiteboard, I felt as if I was leaving behind wet marks on the floor because of how much I was sweating. The teacher kept on encouraging me and made the students keep quiet and give me time to solve the problem. I started solving the problem without explaining the steps. The class was so silent that one could have heard a pin drop. I was easily and surprisingly able to remember the steps that the teacher had shown us. When I was finished, the teacher was amazed, and he congratulated me for getting it right. The other students in the class were shocked, and they also clapped for me. (C) The teacher requested me to explain the steps that I had taken to come up with the final answer. I did not have the energy to do it, and I was like someone who had lost their voice. He understood me and encouraged me with many positive words. He told me that I will be one of the best in his mathematics class, and I should therefore always remain confident and courageous. It was indeed a good experience for me in my math class that day.
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