Sam's first taste of school
His first day of school, was not a happy one. He was the tallest in his grade one class. He was even taller than the mistress. He was given a desk in the back raw of the class to prevent other pupils from looking at him. In spite of this, some of the children turned towards him and pulled funny faces. He responded by showing his fists, while some of the pupils giggled and whispered among themselves until the teacher told them to be quiet.
The lesson began. The teacher, holding a long stick, pointed at the words on the blackboard. She spoke each word carefully in turn, and the pupils responded, some of them looking absently through the wide window, others dragging the words out in almost a shouted.
'Not too loud,' said the teacher smiling. The pupils suddenly broke into smaller groups, chatting. One pupil hit another with a ruler. There was a sudden scream from the middle row. The teacher, becoming angry, walked briskly to the spot.
'Stop this nonsense,' she said in a warning tone. 'If you do it again, I'll whip you very hard. All right, I want all of you to repeat after me, quickly!!!…'
The bell rang for the morning break and the pupils rushed out of the classroom, running happily onto the playground.
Sam, knew he was the oldest in the class and he was cautious about playing with the other pupils. His greatest moment of discomfort came during the first morning break. The pupils had given him a nickname; they called him 'giraffe' because of his towering height. In the beginning, he had given some of the pupils knocks on the head, but later, he realized that the more he beat them, the more they teased him. The result was remarkable.
After a few months, the missionary who had sent him there to school because he was from a poor family came to see how far he was doing. He was told that he had progressed far ahead of the rest of the class. The teacher recommended the school to promote him to join the Grade Two class. And so they did.
7 comments by 1 or more people[Skip to the latest comment]
I am sorry I might not be able to understand and simpathize with his feelings because the situation never happens in Japan. Your well description makes me draw clear pictures in the classroom in my mind. Some parts might be too well discribed, such as, 'running happily onto the playground' – we can see their happiness in the previous sentence 'the pupils RUSHED OUT', or 'because of his towering height' – we can guess why they call him 'giraffe form the above sentences. But 'He responded by showing his fists' or 'some of them looking absently through the wide window' well provide his anger, and their bored and uninterested. I look forward to your next writing!
27 Nov 2005, 11:09
I love your dialogues :) in the 3rd paragraph especially.
From them, I could clearly imagine the teacher trying to quiet down the students calmly at first, and then shouted in exasperation in the end. I could imagine the intonation as well. Well done.
'others dragging the words out in almost a shouted.' —> this part is contradictory i think. i cannot picture whether the children were saying out loudly or just mumbling. u could maybe use another word rather than 'drag' as that would imply a speech which is not too clear. I don't think it's suitable in that sentence as 'shout' would probably mean the students' speech were quite clear.
But that's just what i think. All in all, an enjoyable story.
27 Nov 2005, 13:18
Vivid description of school matters such as lessons, playground. nicknames, bullying…etc. That reminds me of my students and my life as a student in HK. : )
No doubt being the tallest can be very embarrassing and 'the towering height' (I love the phrase) draws unwanted attention which in turn brings trouble. Students just can't help teasing those with weird appearance though it is clear to everyone that it is not their classmate's fault.
To me 'the result was remarkable' sounds funny. Perhaps 'catastrophic' or 'disastrous' is better.
I enjoy reading the story. Keep it going!
27 Nov 2005, 22:28
Well I think this is a sad yet true fact that there are always some students being teased by others ,possibly just due to some stupid reasons ,eg he is higher and older than others just as in this article.
Inspiration came from the real life ,making me feel realistic and reliable.
Perhaps ,more fluctuations in the story would make it more attractive and vivid!
Well ,good work and keep ding it !
01 Dec 2005, 17:53
I like your story very very much. Very real, and the language is the point i like most of this story.
I think i like your writing styles, no artificial stuff, clear and vivid.
02 Dec 2005, 07:14
you picked a good topic to talk about. Children can be rude and if adults don't intervene somehow to protect them it could be worse in the future. They are then marked for life.
There are several things just mentioned above so I won't write them down again.
13 Jan 2006, 09:07
Tome, the first paragraph portrays the situation and the boy's reactions very well – yes, we all have seen that kind of class attitude and a tall (or fat) boy's reaction. Well done. I think that in the next three paragraphs you almost forgot about Sam – remember, the story is titled after him; so perhaps the focus of the teacher should have been on him, but what you show in the story is Sam probably just understood to be there in the class watching the histrionics of his new class fellows.
Furthermore, since the title of the story is Sam's first day in school, it is suggested that you leave it at that; in the last paragraph, the story zooms through three months.
Your use of a typically African animal – the giraffe – to nickname Sam is commendable. It immediately gives the feel of Africa to the story.
27 Jan 2006, 21:27
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