Any thong you can do...
SO THERE you are, trying to get some obscure point across to a roomful of rancorous teenagers and the inevitable happens: some fool's phone goes off.
"It's important," cries the pimply youth concerned, clapping the instrument to his ear as he legs it towards the door.
What do you do? Bawl him out? Explode with anger? Reach for the disciplinary notice? Wrong, wrong and wrong again. That's yesterday's thinking. Because what today's clued-up teachers are increasingly doing is welcoming the mobile into the classroom rather than shutting it out.
Certainly that's what they're doing at St Luke's Science and Sports College down in Exeter. Working on the age-old principle of "if you can't beat `em, join `em", staff have apparently made a series of "entertaining videos"
about the poems their year 11 students are studying and then sent them on to them via their mobiles.
According to the Exeter Express and Echo, the videos "show staff acting out themes from the poetry by pretending to lie in a coffin, sit on a toilet and even run around the playground".
That's kids' stuff, you might think, but hang on, it's happening in further education too. The Learning and Skills Network has just published an encouraging report on a new initiative for colleges to develop teaching materials for mobiles, including texting multiple choice quizzes for students to answer on their phones.
Now that's all well and good, I hear you say, but why stop there? I mean, if we're going to embrace youth culture, why just phones? Why not go the whole hog and start to think like them, act like them and speak like them? Then they'd really know we were on the same wavelength.
First off, we've got to look the part. William Hague famously tried it with his baseball cap. But then he spoilt the whole effect by wearing it the wrong way round - by which of course I mean the right way round. So now we've got to get ours right by getting them "wrong" - you get me?
While we're at it, there's also the other end to think of: that enormous pair of baggy trousers designed to hang enticingly off your teacherly arse but somehow never actually falling off it entirely.
With the male teachers sorted, what about their female equivalents - from now on to be known exclusively as Miss Ho, Miss Gash and Miss Bitch. No more prim tweeds or baggy jumpers for them. Middle-aged they may be, but if they're ever going to earn even a happenth of street cred, it's their middles that they've got to put on show. The final touch being the skin-tight trousers - the real respect-earner this - that reveal extensive rear-end views of thong every time they bend forwards.
Now we're walking the walk, we've got to start talking the talk. Arriving in the classroom, all that "good morning, class" crap has got to go.
"Wagwaan my bloods," you declaim, "watsup wid you all dis sunny mornin'?"
Instantly they're on your side. But if they start to get a bit over-excited - sorry, "vexed" - then you know how to deal with it. "Jam your hype," you bawl, "else me an' some of my teacher bro's will come round your yard an'
slap you up."
Arriving back in your own yard - formerly known as the staffroom - you can cotch happily down with the brothers secure in the knowledge that you're doing the best of all possible jobs.
After all, it's not as if you bring kids in to school and college to take them away from what they already know and teach them something new now, is it?