Tuesday, November 05, 2013

"Only here for the brown slip."

I have encountered a few disengaged students in the past few weeks. Just this past week, I had a girl come in, sit down and say "I don't know if this is rude, but I have to leave ten minutes and I am really here to just get the brown slip." I felt uncomfortable, because I was put in a difficult position. I wanted to actually help her with her assignment, not just give the paper away. I offered her a proposal. I said "we can certainly take the ten minutes to look over your essays, find areas where you may need some work, and I recommend you come back in another day you have time, or provide yourself enough time for the next essay." For the next ten minutes I tried my best to focus on the places she was having issue, mainly with punctuation, and provided her the tools to correct the rest of her work efficiently. Luckily, despite her rush and seeming impatience, she was receptive to the things that I taught her.

On a separate occasion, I had a girl interrupt me about 10 minutes into the session, saying that she needed a brown slip. Needless to say, I was a bit irritated. It seemed as though she was "shushing" me and making it clear that obtaining the brown slip was her main objective for the session. I politely said "Oh no problem, I have one of those for you at the end of the session." I tried my best to engage her in the learning process, but her mind seemed to be somewhere else. I am sure she must have had other events going on in her life that were distracting, so I was not offended. I covered a lot of ground during the session, and although she was not personally engaged, she was responsive to my critiques. I provided her with the coveted brown slip and suggested that she come in another time. I let her know that this is a place where she can come anytime and feel comfortable in the environment. I wanted her to be assured that I was a peer and not an authority figure, to ease her reservations about coming back. Her attitude lightened. She seemed grateful and informed me that she would be back with her next essay.


Post a Comment

<< Home