Rant on Smart Questions

By , Carlsbad, CA
There’s no such thing as a stupid question.
But there might possibly be such thing as a question that’s too smart.
Every class has that kid that asks endless questions. Always wanting to know every nook and cranny of a subject, and genuinely curious, they have the teacher going off on tangents that ultimately waste time and achieve nothing.
For some students, this is frustrating. For many, it’s terrific, a waste of class time during which they can take a much-needed nap.
But the questions that truly irritate everyone are those questions asked simply to challenge a teacher, or to express profound knowledge of something not already explained in class.
Yeah, super annoying.
Because when those kids ask a question, they usually already know the answer, and they just want to trap the poor teacher into feeding their own egos.
I mean, think about chemistry class. Does the kid really want to know more about the quantum theory, or are they just trying to bring up a superior topic so that they can say something about it and show the class that they know about it?
It’s obvious in math class, too, when there’s a kid who wants to take the problem one step further just for the sake of seeming smart. Or the kid who asks the teacher, “Why do we solve the problem like that? Why do we learn that?” For crying out loud…everyone learns it because it’s a standardized curriculum. Go question the government if you really care that much.
And don’t even get me started on history class. When there’s a kid in there who knows a lot about World War II, you know they do, because they never shut up with all the in-depth, off-topic questions they ask the teacher about the Manhattan Project or the different kinds of airplanes or whatever. We get it. You are a fountain of factoids. Now please let us mere mortals just take notes on what we need to know to pass the test.
Good grief, people. It’s already enough figuring out the regular material; why complicate it with overly ostentatious questions? (the word “ostentatious” means “showing off”…notice how annoying it is when I used a big word like that to sound smart when I could have just used “showing off”.)
It’s okay once in a while to ask questions for clarity or curiosity about the topic. But don’t be That Guy who asks the too-smart questions just to flaunt intellect. Goodness knows we have enough stupid questions wasting class time, anyways.
But that’s a whole different issue.





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