Rules For Posting To This Blog and Weekly Blog Question

1. Only use your first name (no last names, addresses, IM screen names, etc.)
2. Show respect and consideration of others when posting and commenting. This includes individuals, students, organizations, political parties, colleagues, etc.
3. Check all posts for spelling and grammar errors before posting.
4. Protect the privacy of others. Gain permission from other people before you write about them. Avoid sharing someone else's last name. Use job titles or pseudonyms when writing about experiences with your co-workers or students.
5. Watch your language. Use politically correct and non-offensive language.
6. Make sure you write about things that are factual.
7. Keep your postings education-oriented. Avoid discussing plans for the weekend, etc.

This week I would like you to use your imagination. You have just won the lottery and will leave your teaching post immediately to travel around the world. As you leave your keys you meet your replacement. You are asked to give this new teacher just ONE piece of advice. What would that be, and why? Enjoy your world expedition!

Blog Post - Week 7
This past week in my own teaching I felt a little disconnected which prompts my question to you, "What was the moment (or moments) when I felt most disconnected or disengaged as a teacher - the moment(s) I said to myself, I'm just going through the motions here?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 6
For the past couple of weeks you have experienced asynchronous online learning (doing modules by yourself). Previously this semester you have experienced synchronous online learning (all together in the Collaborate room). Which do you think is more effective and why do you think that? Which do you like better, and why?

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 5
This week we have what we call "open mic." You can write a post about anything related to your teaching that you would like responses from your classmates.

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 4
Here is this week's question: "What was the event that most took me surprise this week - and event that shook me up, caught me off guard, gave me a jolt, or made me unexpectedly happy?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 3
Please write a post about the following question, "In thinking about my past week teaching what is one thing I would do differently, and why?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 2
Please write a post about the following question, " In thinking about my teaching activities this past week, of what do I feel most proud? Why?"

Fall Semester 2016 Blog Post - Week 1
Describe something you used in your program in the first weeks of school that you learned in the summer NTI program. How did it work? Did it get you off to a stronger start than last year?

Monday, October 14, 2013

Do not pass go... Do not collect 200 dollars...

In my previous blog response to JT I mentioned the daunting task of trying to motivate those students you have that really don’t even want to be there. With each week that passes, I find myself learning more and more about my students while at the same time I am learning more about myself. My story is no different than many of you who chose to take up the mantle of teaching. Before I became a teacher this year, I was working tech support for the High School I now work at. For seven years I entered countless classrooms, saw countless moments of inspiration, and also the shortcomings of students. It was near the end of April that I was given notification that it was a good possibility that I could get the job that came open at the high school and just like many of you I said to myself, “I can do this. This is going to be a walk in the park…”

Looking back on that simple arrogant statement, I realized just how untrue that was. While I still struggle to keep my head above water, I am finding my second wind in this game called teaching. I am moving more towards the realm of efficiency than I was at nine weeks ago, and yes, I am really starting to BELIEVE I CAN do this. Now that the inspirational part of my message is out of the way, it’s time to move onto the dilemma.

While I love teaching and I feel I have been called to teach, I still cannot get over this feeling that I can do more. I have two students of my ninety plus on my roll that will receive grades in the sixty percentile. While my principal and other administration assure me that this is something to be proud about, I don’t think I can ever be “okay” with any student of mine that fails. I’ve contacted parents, made phone calls and countless emails and neither parent even bothered to return my calls or emails.
I looked deeper into these two kids situations and I find it ironic that while one fit the bill of environmental factors, the other one was exact opposite. One of the students lived in a broken home, and mom works at Subway, while the other student has parents that are well known in the community. The other student lives with both parents and even attends church often. Now I know that sometimes a student is just going to fall into that five percent category, but to me, it is a travesty. I have set my class up in a way that as long as you put forth SOME effort you are going to pass my class so when I have two students who simply refuse to even TRY to pass go or even TRY to collect 200 dollars it leaves a bad taste in my mouth.
So in closing I think what I am trying to say is how do you deal with those who simply do not care or lack any motivation to want to succeed? How do YOU reach them? How do you turn that light on in their heads to make them snap back to reality and actually care? Is there a magic word? A magic pill? An answer out there that can push these kids to motivation?
Mr. H.

1 comment:

ChiroCourt said...

My story is exactly like yours. An opportunity arose, I was already teaching on the collegiate level and I thought “This won’t be any different.” WRONG! K-12 and collegiate education is different from an instruction stand point. This is my second year of teaching high school students and even still to this day I ask myself, "What the heck did I get myself into?" My class is setup similar to yours in that if you show effort you will pass. Although the terminology can be a little difficult to grasp, I try to make my class as interactive and easy to catch on as possible.

Unfortunately, I don't have an answer for your question because I have the same exact question. Some of my strategies are to have real world connections, try to relate is specifically to their lives, but it hasn’t helped too much. How do you motivate people who just don't try? What connection can you make with a person so the light bulb will spark for them...? Someone, help us!