As they get older, it's quite apparent that I didn't aim my inherent cynicism far enough over my children's heads when they were younger.
Both kids had one teacher for a total of three years and I liked him (they had his wife for a total of two years and I like her, too). A friend of my son's had so far made it through to fifth grade not knowing how to read or write because his parent's refused to hold him back or get him extra help - as every one of his teachers had recommended they do - because "he'll catch up soon." He covered his ignorance with a sharp wit and disruptive behavior. I was in the classroom one time when this teacher had had enough, walked quietly to the kid's desk, and told him to give him his shoes (he hung them from an overhead light in the classroom, which is just one reason I liked this guy). "Aw, man!" the kid said. "That's Mr. Man to you." That's another reason I liked him, especially since he never raised his voice while dispensing such discipline. No, it makes no sense, but the kids loved it and responded to it.
But he had the educator's disease of turning what he learned at the last seminar he went to into his new reality. Consequently, metacognition was his buzzword for the beginning of my daughter's six-grade year with him. I might have mentioned a time or twenty that he probably didn't know what it meant and that he'd learned it at the last class he took, the one where they had to choose a rock and commune with it (I am not lying about that).
Yesterday my college-sophomore daughter texted me after one of her psych classes:
We're learning about metacognition in my cognition class. Always makes me think of Mr. Teacher saying that and you saying he must have learned it at the last teaching seminar hahaha.
Far from being discreet with my cynicism, turns out that I infected them with it.