What do you do when a student gives up? Some educators say they would work with the student until the last minute of the last class they are together. Others would say that it's not their job to motivate, but to teach, so if the student gives up, it's her problem. Since I am a learner-centered educator, I find the latter answer disappointing and sad, but I understand the frustrations of having a student who has stopped working. I really do!
As I mentioned in my last blog article, when we instill academic behaviors within our content, good things happen! Including and/or teaching the tenets of persistence and perseverance in the classroom may help that struggling student stick-to-it versus giving up. When the climate of a classroom looks at failure as a start point, rather than the end, a student may keep going. When I asked my teachers "If I were a student in your class, how would the ideas of perseverance and persistence be developed within the classroom setting?" Here's what they said:
*Not "allow" the student to give up!
* Tutoring opportunities
*Students collaboratively working in various group formats (partners, trios, quads)
*Time management mini lessons
*Support and encouragement
*Including insight on the growth mindset model
*Appropriate level of difficulty
*Syllabus/Classroom Subject Guide
*Informal assessments (to catch a struggling student before it's too late)
What are the ways you instill the ideas of persistence and perseverance in your classroom?
Alison Thetford, M.Ed