lunes, junio 13, 2005



i was planning on skipping my nightly post in favor of an early bedtime, but madhatter's latest post got me all riled up.

friday i lectured my class. i have six students, and two of the three girls have made fantastic progress. the other is consistently late, never finishes her work, and has the audacity to write/doodle while i direct teach. i'm sorry, if there are SIX of you, do NOT think i'm going to let misbehavior slide. that particular day, my class clown was also piddling around instead of doing his work, so i felt a little talk was in order. i'm definitely the slow-burning type... first i told them that i didn't want to lecture them, i hadn't found it necessary because we all knew why they were there. this was their LAST CHANCE, and so far, most of them were taking it very seriously and i appreciated it. BUT... and then i let my two slackers have it. i did the whole schpiel about how we teach a year's worth of curriculum in three weeks, how they are responsible for their own education, etc. then i looked princess dead in the eye and told her that if she didn't want to pay attention while i taught, she did not need to come on monday. no point in wasting my time, her time, or that of her classmates.

i've never been that mean. today, she strutted in 40 minutes late as the rest of the students were reviewing their TAKS warm-up. as the other five were taking turns solving problems on the overhead, she made a ruckus with the shit in her desk. i damned near lost it. she was busting out all kinds of cleavage AGAIN, this time with body glitter. i definitely need to whip out the dress code guidelines for this one. but show up on time and respect her classmates' while they did the work that she missed? imposible, no hay TIEMPO.

of course, the next exercise we did on estimation, she totally bombed. which meant i had to chill the fuck out and do some serious one-on-one. it's amazing how much apathy can piss me off. at this rate, no way in hell she's passing. no way in hell.

so... do i let her continue her downward spiral? she has no concept of when to use what operation, and although i've been putting heavy emphasis on that underlying process, i can't forsake other material that the other students desperately need to review (i also found out today that they don't really understand area or volume... or how to add/multiply with decimals... or how to convert decimals to fractions... and a million other things). i've been giving my students basic operations homework to review those skills, but of course she hasn't been doing any of it. or rather, she's conveniently left it all at home. sigh. nothing in the world drives me crazier than kids who are doomed to fail simply because they, and their families, just don't give a shit.

wait a sec...what grade are you doing??? don't tell me its 6th grade?!?!
Wow, and to think, I'm trying to teach my ADULT STUDENTS the same crap so they can get their high school diplomas! Those kids are actually giving me hope in this country's future; how sad is that?! Man, I'm so evil. Well, either that or just bitter that my school year hasn't yet ended.
fifth grade. i used to teach seventh grade so i thought this would be a breeze. if you took la princesa away, it'd be a dreamy three weeks.
I know the feeling... I assume these are kids who will repeat fifth grade if they don't pass the test? Sounds like you're being asked to do a lot in a very short time. The student you mention sounds like she isn't even sure if she wants to pass. This is a recipe for frustration, for sure. I'd just try and focus, as much as you can, on what you can control. Hope this helps.
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