Students making your class a low priority

Discussion in 'Art Teachers' started by a teacher, Feb 4, 2015.

  1. ArtTeacher01

    ArtTeacher01 Rookie

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    Feb 9, 2015

    Challenging students are not uncommon to every subject, including art. I have found that consistant caring about these students will eventually win most over. Most want you to leave them alone, but if you demonstrate that you are not and you genuinely care about them and their education, you will get some results over time. Will they become model students, probably not, but they will grudgingly come to respect that you want them to succeed and are not taking 'no' for an answer...

    I think it is easy to write students off, you have so many... But you might be surprised at what persistence can accomplish over time.

    Adam
     
  2. Jerseygirlteach

    Jerseygirlteach Groupie

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    Feb 9, 2015

    What is this based on?

    I hope I'm wrong, but it sounds like you're looking forward to giving low grades that will impact the kid getting into college so you can have revenge. Again, I hope I'm wrong.

    Please do not approach your instruction with what is best for you "psychologically" in mind. I understand apathy can be frustrating - I have certainly been there - but what's best for you shouldn't be a primary factor here. If you "isolate" the kids, as you say, what will turn them around and engage them? What if they decide to become engaged all by themselves and you've already isolated them and made up your mind about them? Bottom line is, you're getting paid to at least try to reach all the kids, not just the good ones. You're allowed to be frustrated by the apathetic ones, but it's not okay to abandon them.
     
  3. greendream

    greendream Cohort

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    Feb 9, 2015

    Crazy how many people are really only interested in hearing their opinions confirmed.
     
  4. a teacher

    a teacher Cohort

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    Feb 9, 2015

    I think it really ends up being about how you want to distribute your energy and where you put your priorities. I don't think its some kind of moral imperative like some people seem to want to make it out to be. When you're busy with curriculum design, grading and working with students every day, answering questions, clarifying concepts, etc. you really don't have the energy or desire to psychoanalyze a kid who's sitting there doing nothing as a way of life. Especially when they are like weights just sitting there impossible to move, giving you nothing to work with. These kids are a lot different than those who are simply frustrated and need encouragement. That's something I provide whenever I'm walking around the room and kids are actually trying.

    Theoretically it's nice to say every kid can be reached, you'll change their life because you're the first to ever pay attention to them, etc. In reality we have to set our priorities. Something's done at the cost of another. I prefer to spend time discussing the assignments and ideas with students who are engaged, rather than robbing them of that attention by pleading with deadbeats to please work, "I know you can do it" and so forth. Often that is simply enabling a lazy kid anyway. Some kids just aren't ready to learn certain things at certain points. They have to mess up and learn the hard way sometimes. Allowing that to happen doesn't diminish how much you care about what you do.

    This is the more nuanced point one must understand when being an educator.
     

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