Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Needy

"I don't get number two," the student whined.

"It's on page 165," I replied.

This was not good enough. I was not giving him enough help.

I explained that he could read the indicated paragraphs (read it himself???) and he would find the answer in there. It was a very straightforward question--no tricks. But this was too hard for him, and so he was not going to do any more of the assignment.

Today was my second day of a week-long assignment in science at the continuation high school. These kids are used to giving up on things. If they don't feel like it, they won't put in the effort. So, I knew that I was going to need to give this boy a bit more of a push.

I talked the boy through the question. Then he needed help with number three (which was easier than number two). He joined me up in the front of the class, and he attempted to trade books with me. He tried very hard to keep his hands on the teacher's edition. That's what he wanted--to copy the answers and not think.

I got the teacher's edition back, and he made it through six reading questions. What about number seven? "I've done enough work today. I'm not doing any more."

He's done enough work? Seems to me that I was considering the questions more carefully than he was.

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