Friday, October 29, 2010

Next thing you know, the Avaricious will move in and ruin the neighborhood.

Student: Avaricious is the noun of avarice, right?
Me: Avarice is the noun.
Student: Then what is avaricious?
Me: Something that you just made up.
Student: No, it's a word.
Me: Yeah, it is a word. It's an adjective.
Student: Adjectives are words too. Don't be racist.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

On your test, don't forget to decimate!

Student: What does decimation mean?
Me: Do you know what decimate means?
Student: Yes.
Me: What is it?
Student: When you put a number into decimals.
Me: Yes, but only if you then completely destroy it.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

'Cuz we all look the same.

Student: But that clearly doesn't apply to you because you are Korean.
Me: I'm not Korean.
Student: I thought you were Korean.
Me: We do this every week. I'm not Korean.
Student: I thought you were. You are, aren't you?
Me: Still not Korean.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


Student: Evade means to sidestep?
Me: A better definition is . . . I can't think of the word. What's another word for duck?
Student: The animal?
Me: To avoid. Evade also means to avoid.
Student: I thought you meant the animal.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Dumb Models.

Me: So after Dalton's solid atom and Thomson's discovery of electrons, it was Rutherford's Gold Foil Experiment. What did he discover?
Student: He found that the atom was mostly empty space and that there was a positive nucleus and then Bohr said there were electron orbitals.
Me: Fixed orbitals, but yes.
Student: But that is wrong.
Me: Yes, we now know it is an electron cloud.
Student: Dalton's model is the lamest.
Me: . . .
Student: All he said is that things are made up of tiny invisible dots. Thanks a lot Dalton.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

My dream is get a yacht, for ocean.

Me: You answered box is to storage as hat is to head. What was your sentence?
Student: You put storage in a box like . . .
Me: You put a head into a hat? It's not quite the same.
Student: No.
Me: How about a box is used for storage . . .
Student: As a boat is used for ocean. That's the answer!
Me: Really? Like, why did you buy that boat? Oh, you know, for ocean.
Student: Ok, that's not it.
Me: What are you doing this weekend? Oh, my friends and I rented a boat for ocean.
Student: The answer is C, car is used for transportation.
Me: What is your greatest passion? I have a passion for ocean.
Student: I get it.
Me: Ok. The next one is ridicule is to tease . . .

Saturday, October 23, 2010

I have taught him too well.

Me: Auspicious
Student: Promising.
Me: Right. Conspicuous.
Student: Obvious.
Me: Good. Meretricious.
Student: Falsely attractive.
Me: Yup. Flippant.
Student: . . .
Me: What does flippant mean?
Student: . . .
Me: Are you thinking? What are you looking at?
Student: . . .
Me: Oh, I get it. Nice.

Friday, October 22, 2010

To his credit, we were discussing Chemistry.

Me: You see how we need to know the speed of light to figure out frequency when given a wavelength.
Student: Totes my goats. You know what happened in soccer today? I'm getting tested for ADD.
Me: You might have ADD.
Student: Today, I couldn't run at all during soccer. Which is weird, because I work out all the time. But my hammy gave out and it is still sore.
Me: Hmm. . . I don't think that is a symptom of ADD.
Student: No, it's not, but watch this hilarious video on YouTube.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

I think Jay-Z wrote a song about that.

Me: Hey.
Student: 'Sup.
Me: I like your do0-rag.
Student: [nods]
Me: White is a good color on you.
Student: I'm going to get dreads.
Me: Yeah, that is usually a good idea for a 12-year old.
Student: My mom said I could.
Me: Is that Dre's autobiography?
Student: Best rapper ever. It's all about the hood.
Me: By hood, do you mean your brownstone off Park Avenue?
Student: Hood is a frame of mind.
Me: Word.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Incognito 2.0.

Me: Right. And where does the decimal go?
Student: Between the 0 and 9?
Me: Yup.
Student: A decimal is so lame.
Me: Why?
Student: It's just a wanna be period.
Me: Yeah. I can see that. The poor decimal with dreams of one day becoming a period.
Student: Yeah!
Me: It should give up.
Student: Yeah.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

He thought he was applying to UC San Quentin.

Student: So I don't have to be accurate in the SAT Essay?
Me: Nope.
Student: I could say Crime and Punishment was written by Jane Austen in 1980 and is about a boy on his raft with a runaway slave.
Me: Yup.
Student: What if I write something untrue about me? Is it legally binding?
Me: What do you mean?
Student: What if I wrote that I killed someone. Could they use it against me?
Me: You want to write a confession as your SAT Essay?
Student: What if I did, what would happen?
Me: You would get a zero for being off topic.
Student: But could it be used in court against me?
Me: Let me rephrase. You are forbidden to confess to murder in your SAT Essay.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Trapped in a Stairwell Part III of XII

Student: Wait, I want to show you something.
Me: What? The elevator's here.
Student: This is the stairwell that I locked the other tutors in.
Me: Haha. That isn't funny.
Student: Do you want to see it?
Me: Nay.
Student: Come on, I won't lock you in.
Me: Not falling for it.
Student: Just for a second, I promise.
Me: Nope.
Student: It's pretty cool in there.
Me: No.
Elevator: Ding!

Sunday, October 17, 2010


Me: Articulate means . . .
Student: Articulate means, wait, wait, I know this, don't tell me.
Me: . . .
Student: Don't tell me!!
Me: . . .
Student: Articulate means . . . to talk!
Me: Talk how?
Student: Talk good.
Me: Close enough.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Do not try to kaholay me.

Student: Kaholay means . . .
Me: The word is cajole.
Student: Oh. It would be kaholay in Spanish.
Me: Yes.
Student: Kaholay means to urge, right?
Me: It's still cajole.
Student: I like kaholay better.
Me: Yeah.

Friday, October 15, 2010

If the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus board trains moving in the opposite direction . . .

Me: Since there is 10th grade math on the test, I'm just going to review what you need to know to answer the questions but not really explain much because you'll get it all more in depth in 10th grade.
Student: Ok.
Me: Ok! First is SOHCAHTOA.
Student: What? That just sounded like you spoke another language.
Me: It's trig. I'll explain. SOH stands for sine over . . . . . . and you see, it's all based on right triangles.
Student: Ok?
Me: Ok, now combinations and permutations . . . . . . . and then you divide by 5 times all the numbers below five. It's called factorial and it is noted by !.
Student: You're making this up.
Me: I swear I'm not. Now imaginary numbers.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Who would appreciate this besides W.C. Williams?

Me: Beside means next to and besides means except for or in addition to.
Student: Like I don't like vegetables besides spinach?
Me: Yup. And so much depends upon a red wheel barrow, glazed with rain, beside the white chickens.
Student: . . .
Me: Let's move on to affect and effect.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

I'm pretty sure this won't be on the test.

Student: You know who's fast?
Me: . . .
Student: Kenyans. They could give me an hour head start and I'd still lose. Do you know why?
Me: . . .
Student: Because they're Kenyans.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

But how does she feel about Post-its?

Me: Ambivalent means unsure. What would your sentence be?
Student: I am ambivalent what time the game is tomorrow.
Me: No, it is more about feelings. Like, I'm ambivalent about the movie. The trailers are bad, but the reviews are good, so I'm unsure about it.
Student: I am ambivalent when the baby is going to be due.
Me: Try again.
Student: I am ambivalent if my brother likes the movie.
Me: It's more about your feelings.
Student: I'm ambivalent about glue.
Me: Glue?
Student: Yes, glue. It's good because it makes stuff sticky but it gets all over the place. I'm unsure about it.
Me: Ok, yes. You are ambivalent about glue.

Monday, October 11, 2010


Me: Endure means to put up with. For example, let's say your brother told a really long story and you didn't . . .
Student: But I like my brother's stories!
Me: Ok, let's say you are watching a sports game with your dad and you didn't . . .
Student: But my dad never watches t.v. with us!
Me: Ok, let's say your mom takes you shopping and you don't . .
Student: I love shopping with my mom!
Me: Ok, you do not like hypothetical situations. You cannot endure hypothetical situations. Does that make sense?
Student: Yes!

Barnyard Math

Me: You have a Problem Of the Week?
Student: Yeah, this is our POW.
Me: I really like POWs, actually.
Student: That’s nice, Ky.
Me: I said POW.
Student: Oh, I thought you said cow.
Me: I know.
Student: I thought that was random.
Me: Yeah.

Sounds like a Math Monster.

Student: I tried to write slope y and wrote slopey.
Me: . . .