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My Best Teacher

Apologies if, like me, you're offended by bullshit.  You see it all the time in education.  Eavesdrop in on a conversation, and it will be there.  And idle flick through my twitter feed throws up more, especially if I focus in on something with a hashtag.  It may be because I'm a simple bloke from the Welsh valleys, but I like a simple, clear message.  Indeed, I've been told off for ignoring shades of grey (although that's really difficult with all of those posters lately). 
Which brings me to my best teacher.  To be honest, I endured school. I didn't enjoy it but saw the point of qualifications (luckily) and found that I didn't have to put that much effort in to scrape by.  Yes, I'm that boy that will try to get away with the minimum possible. I did loads outside of school like teaching adults how to safely fire rifles and a bit of flying and mountain stuff. However, Mr Carter the geography teacher from Cornwall (or God's own country as he liked to refer to it).
You see, I'd taken a little time off (3 weeks of school) to learn how to fly with a cadet flying scholarship from the Royal Air Force.  I'd catch up with GCSEs later.  I missed my physics practical and my Welsh oral GCSEs (final result B Physics, E Welsh. I knoooow).  I didn't think this was a problem until I returned to my Geography class. Mr Carter asked to to stand before a rapid fire barrage of questions, that I couldn't answer.  Turned out that three weeks worth of work was a lot.  
It taught me this: accept the consequences of your decisions. Don't blame anyone else and realise that you are the only one that can shape your life. He taught me that swagger not converted does not count.
The intervention came just in time and I worked hard to get the grades and through A'Level. I appreciated the honesty. The message wasn't dressed up. Sometimes it shouldn't be. Of course, Carter knew me fairly well. 
Sometimes clarity is more important. Sometimes the difficult conversation is the best option. Sometimes we just have to say what we mean. 
Thing is, all I can remember is the trip to a river and sheep farming. 


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