What is the most unjust figure you have ever received at school?

A zero on a key mathematics in the second year of the Humaniora.Our math teacher was quite quirky.

He once asked for a key to draw a triangle.A very strange question we found, we were no longer in elementary school? But all those who drew a ‘ special ‘ triangle (e.g. A rectangular or equilateral triangle) was given a zero on that part.

General protest of the class that these were also triangles did not matter.

In any case, for the test in question we had to prove a trigonometric theorem.I had done that nicely. Only our teacher was not convinced of that. He had a lot of added-up. He found that in a certain rule I had taken an intermediate step too little and on another part there was another intermediate step too much. Another piece I had done better in another way, etc. In the end he wrote a lot of death: ‘ There is too much red to get points ‘.

So I had a zero.As a thirteen-year-old I found that fairly unjust, could I do something that he had made so many remarks? I could possibly still live with a minimum points deduction. But a zero? I went on to recover, but unfortunately there was no discussion with that teacher, the zero remained.

But the most striking story was during my exam informatics in the first year university.

As a chemist in-be, we had to learn FORTRAN.

It was early years 90 so slightly different times, the box it was not part of the training.

For most students, Progamming was therefore totally new.

FORTRAN was one of the first programming languages and a forerunner of among others BASIC.At my sixteenth I already wrote small programs in BASIC on our Atari 1040.

Mathematical functions graphically suggest to check my homework math and a program to print the music tracks on cassette tapes, that kind of stuff.(You could still control printers at the time via Printerkomman do’s so I could print drawings separately and also print text but they did not succeed. I didn’t find it better to print the drawings first and use a printer command to put the sheet back up and then print the text.)

In any case, the informatics lessons were purely time-loss for me, but as an exemplary student I went to the lesson nicely.

During one of these first lessons, the Prof had given an assignment that we had to make during the lesson.We had a lesson in such a large aula and ‘ mister ‘ then walked around to see how we brought it off. I particularly noticed that the beautiful girls got more attention.

I sat on one of the back rows in the Aula and sat back leaned what to look around.When the pro passed, he asked irritated whether I should not make the assignment.

I looked at him ostentatively and made a-presumably reasonably arrogant gesture-towards my leaf.He took the paper, looked at it and without saying a word he put it back down and went on. (I had made the assignment flawless.)

Presumably he had remembered that incident, and during the exam he had to have found the opportunity to present me the account.

It was an oral exam with written preparation.It was a very simple exam and I was the first of my group ready.

I wanted to put myself at the back of the table of ‘ Mister ‘.I put myself down, and I notice that the Chair was rather unstable and asked politely if I could not take another seat. After an unintelligible murmur that I interpreted as in agreement I took a new chair and put me back down.

“This morning the chair was still perfect, you probably just broke it!”

I did not quite know what to say on that remark but ignored it and proceeded to the first question.

We had to convert a graphical representation (flow Diagramma) into a program and also give the output of the program.In retrospect I found out that it was a schedule to generate the primes from 100 to 200.

It only worked if you had defined your variables as integers.Since there was nothing in the task, I had it worked out with variants. I also gave this in my explanatory statement. He couldn’t give me any wrong, but he wanted me to correct it on the spot with the help of integers. I asked something to write about it and started looking for the first numbers. But apparently his table was also unstable and because I started to write, the table began to wobble.
The reaction to this was quite unprofessional.He snapped me, “love you but calmly, or should it be broken?

After which he turned a quarter turn and chuckled in himself and then turned back to me.

Try to find primes as a young droll of 18 in that situation!

I was all about renovated to react adequately.

I suspect he didn’t dare to tube me, so I got another B (12 or 13 out of 20).But, to this day, I continue to call it the abuse of power of a pro who could not have his classes no added value for some students.

During physics I sat next to Sjors.Sjors was a nice guest with whom you could laugh. We often walked together in the break through three house, where our school stood.

However, Sjors was not the smartest, let alone the smartest of the classroom.Sjors was very interested in physics.

One day the lecturer shared the results of a written examination.

Sjors was the first to turn.

On his petal stood “10“.
Sjors immediately jumped a hole in the air, followed by something that could go on for a rain dance in some parts of the world.

I have a ten!

Of course I congratulated him immediately.I found it sincerely handsome of him.

When I looked again I found it odd that there were so many red strokes on his leaf, but I couldn’t see his petal well because Sjors was still busy jumping.

Finally I got my petal.I had “100” on it.
At that moment I felt rather to about my figure and I had to do with Sjors.

A 9.5 for Korean literature,

At the university in Leiden,

And this had not occurred in years,

I heard from the head of the department.


We have had to study dozens of texts in the lesson, and have been discussing them very strongly.

I quickly noticed that in my class I studied by far the least.

After the first few texts I had already finished, I was already very busy with other subjects,

But I could continue to participate,

Because I was in that same college,

Other than my fellow students,

Learned a wise lesson about improvising,

And because I,

In contrast to my fellow students,

Understood exactly what the teacher expected of me.


The closing command was a write command.

This was perceived as a hell.Co-students were working on finding a suitable subject for weeks,

With a lot of effort just before the expiry of the deadline, they handed in their work,


The last lesson I had already missed, I was on holiday in Limoges where my wife then studied.

Two weeks before the deadline I received a mail from the teacher or I actually already had a topic.

I was scared of rot.The question struck me,

Because I had not yet thought about that.

The idea came up spontaneously with a glass of wine the same evening,

And the next morning I was beaten to work at the local library of Limoges.

I wrote the whole in a day time,

and made use of mostly Korean and French sources which were well available at the University of Limoges.

It became a comparative study between Franz Kafka and a Korean writer from the same period.

My teacher found it unlikely to be good, and rewarded this, coupled with my share in the discussions conducted during the lesson with a 9.5.


Whether that 9.5 was a reflection of my acquired knowledge about Korean literature?

Very certainly not.

But I had learned a lot of other things during that lecture which the 9.5 did justify anyway.

See also: answer from Sebastian Toledo on what have you learned from your favorite college at university?

For all my book reports.My father had booklets of “Regest Digest” whatever that may be called. (Reader’s Digest So, thank you Laura)

And then there came a booklet every month that consisted of the concise story of 5 real books.If I had to make a book report I would have one of those stories. And then I made the report.

Phew phew phew.

In the bridge class My history teacher was also my class mentor.I never did my homework and therefore my figures were not too good. My mentor thought I had to go to the HAVO but the teachers ‘ meeting was divided: some colleagues said VWO. My parents too and they have put their foot in the door: it became VWO.

Soon it turned out in 2 and 3 VWO that I was very good in history.My figures rose to 8 on average and then to Nines and Tienen. Until I got back my former mentor in 4 VWO as a history teacher. All of a sudden my figures dropped to celebrate and fives. I was in the meantime at a homework institute where I worked hard under the artful supervision of the owner (self-chemistry teacher). But despite the fact that I liked history and had predisposition and how hard I worked: more than a 5 or a 5.5 was not there. Discussion was pointless: I would not have understood this, or that was not well worded. He always found a reason. With the heels over the ditch I went over, partly due to a persistent insufficient history.

In 5 VWO I got my lecturer from the 3rd back and my figures suddenly popped up again.In retrospect, the true reason was: the ex-mentor was frustrated because my parents had responded to his advice and wanted to show that I was not at home in VWO. Only at the graduation ceremony did he apologise to my parents: Martijn can do it and I was wrong. Unfortunately, he has not apologized for his sabotage in 4VWO, but under the line it has fortunately not had any effect.

Well this is a really nice question because it does bring back some good memories of my time at the HTS in Rotterdam.

I studied electrical engineering TCK and we had a number of electives.Not that I chose the easiest boxes but besides mathematics, the MS Access box was a whole relief. Yes really, there was a box where you had to create a database in Microsoft Access. Your team consisted of 2 men.

I was together with a thoroughbred Suri and we had made something of an auto parts database.On the day of judgement, the teacher, a Hindu man, went around the classroom to judge the teams. He asked the teams to ask, many questions, and wanted a short demonstration.

Arrived at us he said, ‘ Sedney and Admodikromo.What have you made? ‘. ‘ An Autonderonderdelen database, Mister ‘. “Are you coming from Suriname?” We resounding ‘ Yes Sir ‘. He, ‘ Ok, you get a nine ‘.

He goes on to the next team and starts to crack that entire database… Sometimes it pays to be not white, hahaha.

I seize this opportunity to process a childhood trauma.;-)

  1. A 7.5 for the mastery of German language (MBT pronunciation), while I grew up in Germany and speak German accentingly.

A German does not hear that I am a Dutchman. As long as I understand German speaking well. 😉 And that while a number of others with a Rudi Carell accent from here to Tokyo got considerably higher figures. “For I swallowed the words.” That does even the German (old) nobility. Probably the teacher experienced a kind of threat, OID… :-/

  • A 6.5 for a history of prehistory, which I have a great deal of knowledge about.
  • Because “it was far too detailed with too scientific language, so I had literally overwritten it”. Maybe because I read books for adults, instead of ‘ Miffy In the playground ‘ or ‘ Pinkeltje and the evil sorcerer ‘. (The last I also read as a child, but it’s about the principle. ;-)) A classmate with the same subject, but level small-small-kindergarten, got a 7.5. ;-

  • In contrast, I once got an 8 for oral English, because the teacher focused on 1 specifically filmed book, which I happened to have read in Dutch and of which I could precisely name the subtle differences with the film.
  • Of the remaining 9 books, I had only quickly taken the extract. Partially. 🙂 An 11 for system philosophy.I can no longer reproduce what that was about. I went into discussion with the lecturer that this was a very weird figure. But he stopped walking. Then I went to the student administration with my exam note. They could not handle an 11 in their system. I was therefore not successful for that year. The only solution would be to do retentamen. I have objected and in the end after a few months an objection committee of my 11 made a 10.

    98/100 for the final exam physics.I had all the questions correctly, not even a comma wrong. But the teacher didn’t wish to give me 100 because (I quote) “No one is perfect”.

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