The teacher walks slowly around the room with an unreadable glare on his face while handing out the test. As he hands it out he mentions that this test is worth 80 percent of your final grade. Students receive their test and pencils begin to anxiously race across the page, soon the erasers are moving almost as quickly. Erasers are eating away at the pencil marks on the student’s tests sometimes taking fibers of the paper with them. Now the pencils are slowing down creating a sort of melodic tune. If you listen closely it sounds as if there is a band in the classroom. The pens and pencils are tapping on the desks as if they were drums and the soft sighs of the students in the background all create a sense of anxiousness all over the room. Feet are fidgeting across the floors and there continues to be an ever so silent sound of pencils scratching across the surface of the paper. Pages are turning, teachers are glaring, and students are sighing. As the students finish up their tests and flip through them to check their answers some of them begin to second guess themselves. Crumbling under the pressure some choose to just give up and turn it in but others choose to work through the whole test once more. Eventually all students are told to place their pencils on the desk and they slowly walk to the front of the classroom to place their test in their teacher’s hands. This begins the most stressful part of the process, the wait. As they hand the paper to the teacher their heart beat begins to race and they anxiously wait for sometimes as long as a week to find out their destiny. Constantly on their minds is the future of their grade. Unable to relax until they find out their scores the students try to take their minds off of the test. The next time the class meets the teacher hands out their scores and another chorus begins but instead of sopranos and altos there are a mixture of relieved and worried voices. The relieved section is the sounds of cheering and the worried have sounds of fear and sighs.
September 28, 2009