Friday, February 26, 2016

Tales from the Classroom - episode 2

This is a more current story.

I've got a student who has a little math anxiety.  Actually I have several students with a little math anxiety.  Sometimes they express it as hate... sometimes they decide in advance to accept defeat and just don't try.  Their problem is their teacher (me) has high expectations of all her students and I do not accept the lack of trying.

I believe all students, at some level, can succeed at something that is hard.  We all can't be good at the same thing - how boring would our world be?  I feel part of my job is to hold their hands a little bit and, at the right time, let go and let them fly solo.  The first time they do something independently is something wonderful to witness.

So one student with this anxiety has decided to trust me with her feelings.  She knows I don't judge if she tries hard. And she does try very hard and mostly, pretty successfully.

The thing that frustrates me are the students who do not take advantage of offered help in a timely manner, preferring to wait until right before the test.  Many times they will stare blankly and doodle on their notesheets, not filling them out, and then consequently not understanding the content.  Then they are the students who complain about homework when half of it could have been completed before they left school.

I am fortunate.  I love my students.  I love my job.  I feel so blessed to work in a place that puts faith in Jesus above all else, where I can openly share my faith with my students.  So, when I have to be tough with them, and I am, they know it is in love and with the hope they will choose to learn something that may challenge.

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