I was 16, final year of High School, GCSE Science lesson. Mr Moore was very angry at our class that had just scored abysmally on a Mock Science exam. I wasn’t too worried though. I had scored a ‘C’ and was rather pleased with myself as I hadn’t revised at all and yet I had come out with a pass.
I began zoning out of Mr Moore’s speech and zoning in to Bradley who was sitting just behind him and doing some great silent impersonations of the irate teacher.
I must have smirked or something because Mr Moore suddenly said,
‘D’s just aren’t good enough at this point in the year…and neither is a ‘C’ when your capable of getting an ‘A’, Cathy, you’re eyes aren’t on me and your attention is not on the course.’
I instantly went bright red and Mr Moore became my most hated teacher. I was embarrassed and fuming. How dare he call me out, in front of everyone in the class! And actually, a ‘C’ was pretty impressive to say I hadn’t revised, and the real exam was still a few weeks away. I would be fine.
I was determined to do well in Science and achieved an A* in the final exams.
I spent years feeling cross at that memory of Mr Moore’s put down, before I realised that he was actually right. I had been coasting in that exam. Confident that I was ‘good’, I stopped trying to do better. It is a trait I now know I have to watch out for. My areas of strength can easily become my areas of laziness, and I don’t want to be like that.
This paragraph is from ‘Bounce; the Myth of Talent and the Power of Practice’, the book I became obsessed with last year. This is the attitude I want to develop in my life especially in my strongest areas; preaching and writing.
When I was 16 I was happy to coast. Now, at 28, more than ever I want to work hard and strive to be better.
It may have taken 16 years but I am today very grateful for a couple of sharp words from a disappointed Science teacher.