15 May 2005

Classroom Control

It was a philosophy class, and it was required for many disciplines. The classroom was a large auditorium, filled with 400 students.

This professor was an intense sort. Tall and thin, with horned rim glasses, he would pace from one end of the large stage to the other as he lectured, stroking his chin, sometimes jabbing the air with his right hand to make a point. He seldom looked toward his audience.

But early in the semester he did something I'll never forget:

He stopped pacing and turned toward the class, looking into the middle of the mass of students. He stood motionless for a moment, obviously focusing on one point in the crowd.

"YOU!!" He called out as he pointed. "Yes...........YOU in the checked shirt!" "Stand Up!"

399 pairs of eyes turned to the center of this huge room!

"What's your name?"
"Joe Smith, sir."

Uncomfortable silence for a moment receiving the glare from the intense prof........

"Mr. Smith, if I have to stop this class because of your talking again, you will fail this course......do you understand?"

"Yes sir."

You could have heard a pin drop.
And there were no more interruptions in this large class for the rest of the semester!

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