Students were writing an essay in which they needed to discuss three different alternatives to paying such high gasoline prices.  What follows is the first paragraph of a student’s essay:

“To begin with, pee could be a great alternative for gas because it doesn’t cost much.  Also in 2003 scientists made a breakthrough.  They found out that pee is combustible and can be used in a car.  Gasoline is too expensive and pee can substitute it.  Clearly, pee helps in the search for lower prices.”

EDIT:  Unfortunately, none of my students decided to write or say “the gas is too damn high”


8 thoughts on “Golden.

  1. If you are going to humiliate your students online about their mistakes with grammar then you should read over this post again since you made one key grammar mistake. Might want to stop think ing of yourself as perfect.

    • Humiliation implies that the students know they are being made fun of, which even that is a stretch. I fixed the post, but for full disclosure, here was my error: ” three different alternative to paying such high…” a simple typo, I would say. Also, I never said I believed myself to be perfect, but I appreciate the flattery. Thanks for taking your time to post.

  2. I could be wrong, but I think David and Charles were referring to the superfluous use of the word “different.” By definition, an alternative is different from other proposals.

    “Three alternatives” would carry the same meaning. Then again, maybe *your* students needed that extra clarification ;)

    • Ah, well, I simply copy the essay prompts from the list of prompts given on state assessment tests in past years. This one did in fact say, “three different alternatives” so I guess that says something about the education system, huh?

      • Ah, if only we knew what state you teach in. I could write the school board a letter suggesting the use of “distinct” rather than “different.” Yet I have to weigh in against writing simply “three alternatives,” for fear of essays recommending three varieties of pee rather than two “legitimate” alternatives to the urine solution.*

        *Presumably 100%

  3. I find this ironic because my former neighbor’s eight-year-old came up with the same theory, except it involved–ahem–the human expulsion of gas. Just the thought of people saving their “toots” in jars had him in paroxsyms of laughter. And middle-schoolers think they are so above that…

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