Thursday, May 12, 2016

More Non-Readers


English class. The assignment: read the book they had selected for a book report.

I like these sorts of plans. (Their teacher does this because he's fairly certain they aren't doing the reading at home. They're freshmen, so that's a good assumption.) In an ideal world, I'd get to pull out a book and read along with them. But this isn't an ideal world.

They whined and complained. They hated their book. (Then pick another one! The book is student choice, so they could pick something they'd like that fit the parameters.)

Ernesto wasn't going to read. The first thing he asked me was if they were going to get a break. (My "no" elicited a "bitch" remark from another student. Second time in two weeks.) Apparently, his settling down to read was contingent on knowing the reading would be broken up somehow.

Ernesto did eventually get silent. It's easy to tell which classes normally read quietly. They're the ones I can settle to silence with minimal effort (and a warning that the names of those that refuse to comply will be left).

But Ernesto refused to read.

I know this, because he barely glanced at his book. He fidgeted. Did all the annoying things kiddos do--drop noises, the requisite restroom break, significant looks at his neighbors (in communication). In short, he did anything and everything he could do while not talking (and not pulling out his cell phone) to entertain himself besides read the book in front of him.

Which is why I couldn't sit and read with them. It felt like the only thing keeping him from beginning to talk (well, it did stop the drop noises) was my attention on him. My glare. That he saw that I was watching him. Him and the about one-third of the class who were engaged in similar behaviors.

Either that, or they kept pulling my attention. There was no way I could get immersed in any story.

This makes me cranky.

And when I'm cranky, I express my displeasure in my note. With names.

It's small comfort. But then again, I've met this teacher. I don't imagine they're going to enjoy the consequences of their actions.

26 comments:

  1. Are you allowed to put him in a corner with nothing but the wall and a book in front of him?

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  2. Alex comes up with great comments. I too wonder if it is possible to remove him and put him in such a situation. I'd love a class time like that to be able to read, especially a book of my choice. It would have been 10 times worse if it was an assigned book to keep him on task.

    betty

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    Replies
    1. True. I could have sent him out. I probably should have.

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  3. I do not understand why kids are allowed to call their teachers a bitch! That just blows my mind.

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    1. They're not. They get into serious trouble for things like this. Which is why I report it.

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  4. They deserve to get in some trouble. I know some people are just restless and have a hard time sitting still, but others are just jerks.

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  5. Do you think attention spans are getting shorter?

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    Replies
    1. Not necessarily. They are freshmen. And the other class did very well with the same lesson. It's just certain students.

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  6. They may be teenagers, but they still need to learn actions have consequences. That's life!

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    Replies
    1. Oh yeah. And they'll feel the pain. (Or rather, they did feel the pain the next day.) Mr. H is rather strict.

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  7. I wonder if Ernesto can truly read? Or if he has the "I'm too cool for that" syndrome. You wouldn't have to tell my daughter to read twice!
    Barbara, blogging at Life & Faith in Caneyhead

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  8. Liz, you'd think by now, kids would realize there are consequences to their actions even if it comes later. Too bad Ernesto and the other slackers couldn't just go with the flow and read their book of choice. How long is class time? It has to be less than an hour, am I right? Shot, if that were me I'd either pretend to read or take a nap, if the sub didn't care. You know? Oh well, some day down the road they will find themselves being annoyed by a teenager, mostly likely their own teenage kids. lol

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  9. Replies
    1. Yeah, well, they can be interesting...

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  10. Where is there parents and are they a ware of there behavior. I wouldn't be on line if I talk to someone of authority like that.
    Coffee is on

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    Replies
    1. Yep, there probably is a parent issue there. Usually is.

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  11. I guess you've perfected that glare over the years Liz. Me too. It's more powerful than a superhero's.

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    1. Sometimes I'm surprised by how effective it can be.

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  12. I don't know how you didn't kill that kid! I would have probably done my best to ignore him and get reading done anyway, like the kids, but all the things you mentioned him doing? argh! At least you got your revenge by including his name on the note to his teacher.

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    Replies
    1. This is normal twitchy behavior. The drops noises? Common occurrence.

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  13. Gosh I wish placing them in the corner with a dunce cap would come back. I know the dunce cap might be cruel but what you have to put up with is cruel too.

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    1. Actually, I think that might not be so bad. Well, I guess we couldn't do the dunce cap, but the kid in the corner... The problem is, if I were to have put him in the front, he would have "entertained" the class rather than be shamed by the experience.

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  14. I wish I had day where all I had to do was read! It always surprises me how many kids won't read, but them a Kindle and they'll happily read all day!
    Debbie

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    1. Are you sure they're reading on that Kindle? I think they're more likely playing games. (And I totally allow Kindles, so that couldn't be their excuse.)

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  15. I decided to go back and read this post. Ernesto sounds a lot like one of my coworkers. He is 20 and very immature. He will do anything to get out of the pharmacy area (and his responsibilities)- multiple bathroom breaks, volunteering to take the trash back and disappearing for 30 minutes, going off to buy another Monster drink...I try to tolerate him, but it's not easy!

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    Replies
    1. I worked with someone like that back in my retail days. Amazing that he doesn't get fired.

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