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Classroom Behavior 
From Der Rekrut, Transcribed by James T. Miller

Below you will find an excerpt from Regulations for Garrison Duty as applicable to enlisted men.  This was taken from an English translation of the 1935 German Army manual.  Thanks to Michael Bollow for giving us permission to use excerpts of Der Rekrut here on this site.  If you would like to purchase this manual, please visit his website at:  

1. Preliminary notes

Children often believe that they must learn in school for the teacher's sake.  A grown man serving as a soldier, however, will diligently and attentively cooperate during class, so that he can carry out the varied and difficult duties of his profession.  As in other areas of military service, there is no unimportant area of classroom study.

2.  Sit with good posture.

      Do not lounge on the chairs.

Illustration 1. Illustration 2.
"Falsch"    "Richtig"

The buttocks should rest against the back of the chair.

     If the class is seated at a table, do not lean on your elbows.  Sit with a casual but upright posture (with forearms on the edge of the table).

 Illustration 3. Illustration 4.
"Falsch" "Richtig"

3.  Your superior will give order as to whether you should stand or sit when answering a question.

4.  If you can answer a question, hold your upper body very erect and give the instructor a pointed look.  (Do not raise your hand.)

5.  Always look at the instructor.  Sit in a staggered arrangement.  If high-ranking superiors are present, do not let yourself be distracted by them.

6.  The instructor's questions must be answered loudly and cheerfully.  When the instructor asks a question, he wants to hear what the individual has understood or remembered.  For this reason, it is incorrect to answer a question simply with "Yes" or "No."  Each question must be answered with at least one complete sentence.

7.  Giving another student the answer is false comradeship, because the other student learns nothing.  He will also depend on his comrade and not pay attention in class.  Thus, a person who gives answers to another student encourages laziness and is also guilty if, later, the lazy comrade can do nothing.  Moreover, your superior usually notices even the most seemingly inconspicuous of whisperings and will take severe action against this bad habit.

8.  The well-mannered soldier controls himself and does not blurt out an answer without being asked, simply because he believes that at that moment he is particulary knowledgeable.

9.  It is customary in many schools to take notes during the lecture.  In the military classroom, writing must be done only on command, because it is impossible to listen with full attention to the explanations of your superior when you are writing.

10.  When you are called to the blackboard to demonstrate, do not turn your back to the class.  Always stand next to the blackboard.

Illustration 5. Illustration 6.
"Falsch" "Richtig"

11.  When a soldier does not understand something, he should not hesitate to ask his superior.  It is wrong to think that asking a question of the instructor or of other students makes one look foolish.

12.  It is stupid to laugh at a comrade who learns more slowly in class, since everyone has certain tasks that he finds particularly difficult.




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