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The Relationships Between the Students and Their Teachers

Satisfactory Essays
The poem “Students,” by Tom Wayman and the story, “Crow Lake,” by Mary Lawson presents two teachers who cope with the same difficulties of teaching. Although the teachers are faced with identical circumstances, their resolutions for the problem vary. Wayman, in the poem, and the narrator in the story both fails to make connection with their students, however, Wayman understands his students’ behavior while the narrator refuses to communicate and simply gives up on teaching.

The two teachers introduced in “Students” and “Crow Lake” both struggle to engage their students’ interest because they can not connect well with the students. One of the main factors that separates Wayman and the narrator with their students is the generation gap. On Wayman’s first meeting with his freshman class, he already feels the distance between him and the students, as the speaker describes that “Wayman was sure the computer was in error,” because the birthdates it showed was so recent. (2-3, Wayman) There is a difference in values and attitudes between the generation the students and that of Wayman’s. Although Wayman probably needed the “Kung Fu Theory of Education” when he was young, in order to deal with hardships all by himself, the students, most of whom are still able to depend on their parents both financially and mentally, can not recognize the importance of Wayman’s words. (25, Wayman) The narrator in “Crow Lake” also senses the difference between she and her students, too. She wonders that “how many of the students” in her classroom “would have had the opportunity to see” the marvels of life which she had seen when she was little. (16, Lawson) The narrator does not understand why her students show almost no interest in the things she is so ...

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...ake the students’ apathy personally and affect her negatively.

The relationship between the two teachers and the students is of misunderstanding resulted from difference of generation, and the flaws each teacher has. The students do not understand the values of education as Wayman passionately teaches, and do not realize the wonders of life as the narrator in the story tries to deliver. Moreover, Wayman’s flaw of leniency and the narrator’s lack of communication skills further widens the gap between the teachers and students. However, Wayman is able to identify his students’ misunderstanding, and be unaffected by their indifference, while the narrator blames herself for her students’ apathy toward the subject and completely get discouraged from teaching. From these points above, Wayman in “Students” is more effective as a teacher than the narrator in “Crow Lake.”
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