March 27, 2014
The typical know-it-all. I swear, I have a class with one every semester and it doesn’t get any less infuriating as time passes and I mature. There is being confident and knowledgeable and then there is being arrogant or even annoyingly outspoken.
We’ll start with the more arrogant form of know-it-all. During my sophomore year I had a class where I sat next to a kid who just thought he knew everything there was to know about world history. At first it started out with him voicing his opinions regularly and contributing to class discussion on nearly every topic. Annoying? A little. Innocent? So I thought.
As the semester wore on and the class got more comfortable with each other, this kid started to get much more “in-your-face” about things. One day a kid brought up an idea and immediately Mr. Know-it-all disputed it (without politely interjecting or raising his hand). He tore the original contributor apart, telling him how ridiculous his opinion was. I’m not kidding when I quote him directly as saying, “and don’t even begin to argue back with me because I know I’m smarter than you, buddy.”
The whole situation got out-of-hand much too easily and Mr. Know-it-all’s response was completely unwarranted and quite honestly, unwanted. How about the kid in your class that means well but seriously gets to the point where you think he’s trying to make the rest of the class look bad? You know, the kid who has all of the answers, but isn’t mean-spirited about it? That almost drives me crazier because most of the time, these kids don’t even realize what they’re doing.
Before you go jumping on me about effort and class participation, realize that I’m not discrediting the kid’s desire to participate or be an active learner, because we all should strive for both of those goals. I simply get annoyed when one kid hogs all of the glory. Yeah, sure, you might know the answer right off the top of your head, but give the rest of us a second to process it because we might require a little longer to think about it. It’s not that we don’t like you, kid; it’s just that we want you to slow your roll a little bit so we can learn with you, not from you. Obviously know-it-all number one is much worse than know-it-all number two, but they can both ruffle my feathers equally at time.