CLASS RECORD: John Martie’s voice lesson PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 03 October 2014 11:50

BY Christine Y. Guinacaran


John Martie was one very nice student.  He never lost his temper when he was teased about his size, nor was he unwilling to share paper or lend a ballpen to the class parasites, who  surface every quiz time.

John Martie was a fat boy, and like all fat boys, he was a target for banter, when the class was in a merry mood to tease someone. Therefore, he had many friends, because he was just a good-natured, plump boy, who did not easily take offense.

But then, John Martie had a defect, which I was sure would bring him trouble if not addressed. It was the way he talked.

He talked like a commanding officer who made extra sure that his orders were immediately obeyed the way he wanted them to. His voice was forced and loud and strained.

It was a stressful voice that gave the listeners  shortness of breath.  Listening to him  made me prematurely tired at 8:00AM, for John Martie was my first period student.

I was sure that one day, an irritable teacher or someone, would deem him pushy and imposing, and and make it hard for him.  Therefore, I decided to take this matter on my own hands, and appointed myself, the voice teacher of John Martie. I was going to make him a smart talker .

John Martie was teachable and very young, I did not see any reason why I could not be successful in this endeavor.

So one morning for the sake of listening  closely to his tone, I asked if he was a monitor. Then promptly, like a choleric commander, he bawled that his turn was tomorrow yet. The classmates giggled and I told him to try to say it slowly and calmly.

“I will be a monitor tomorrow yet, ma’am”, came the timid voice of John Martie. The difference was noticeable, that even John Martie was impressed with himself.

From then on, John Martie intentionally talked slowly and calmly. Sometimes, when John Martie slips in his tone, the classmates would tell me, and John Martie would good-naturedly shift to the correct way of talking. It was interesting to observe his progress.

With the voice of a commander, John Martie was an amiable boy and everybody liked him, more so now, with his quiet and calm way of talking.

The other day, the mother of John Martie gave me a very pretty bracelet made of colorful stones and beads.  Maybe she is grateful that there is no more stressful sound every time John Martie opens his mouth.