Parent Teacher Conferences, American Idol Style
I’ll admit it: I love American Idol. I’m not normally a fan of reality TV or the American Idol derivatives, but there is something about AI that captivates me. (Prediction: Danny Gokey is going to be the Season 8 winner. Take it to the bank!) For the record, I also tend to like things that fall into the “So bad it’s good” category: Coyote Ugly, Bring It On!, and the new Knight Rider.
Besides the inherent comic value of the auditions, one of the things I find fascinating about Idol is the judges. More specifically, I find the critique by the judges and the response of the contestants to be totally intriguing. Paula will always say something good about a contestant, even if it has nothing to do with the actual competition, and rarely offers any concrete advice. Simon is brutally honest, acidic and stingy with his praise. Randy is exuberant (“We got a HOT one tonight dawg!”) and truthful (“It was just okay for me.”) but never in a mean-spirited way. (I’m leaving out the new judge Cara because I haven’t figured her out yet. Why is she there?What does she add? I’m perplexed.)
Who do contestants try their hardest to please? Simon. Who do contestants listen to? Simon. As a teacher, who would you want to emulate at your next Parent Teacher Conference night?
Most of the time, I think teachers (all teachers!) are Paula. We feel the need to say something nice. We are all experts at speaking Teacher when we have to, of saying the hard things in a diplomatic and non-threatening way.
Every one of us (okay, maybe just me) dreams of being Simon, if only once. Oh, to say the things that are running through my head in an unedited (but safe for TV) manner would be cathartic! Brutal honesty would suit me, but would it be helpful?
Randy is my Idol when it comes to PTCs. Celebrate the good, acknowledge the bad and give some advice on how to get better. Now, if I can only get away with calling all my parents ‘dawg’…
Who is your PTC Idol?
Relatedly, what do you like that is so bad that it’s good???