Tuesday, May 28, 2013

"What had happened was... "

As the semester winds down, I am losing the inspiration that I started with. The community of students that I am working with hit their wall: it seems as if they cannot do anymore work. The college preparation group started out this way, so I felt that there wasn’t much I could do with them from the start. The problems continued to pile on top of each other: lateness, absences, and not doing homework. Continuity and transitions were thrown away; each day felt like a new start. I had to catch up at least a third or half the group at one time or another. That’s what it might have felt like, but there are a lot of needy people in this community of students and each has a different set of challenges.

Image by Doc Rogers (ii)

As we reached the middle of the semester, it seemed like adding another activity would exacerbate the challenges I was already dealing with. Despite that, I decided to try anyway. We had one day. One day to introduce a four person group to blogging. One day to sign them up and sign them on. A couple of the students giggled through the lesson on how to operate the blog. They’ve had two weeks now and only one student has managed to comment or attempt any of the work. I felt like I Willy Wonka battling Veruca Salt. Nothing happened. I probably won’t see them until they have done something. Right now they are working on job readiness, which is what they really need. Perhaps they will be less distracted if they are able to take of their needs.

The frustration is pasted on my face. It seems like the students cannot commit to their own success at this time. At the same time, I have not committed to it either. I probably need to sit them down and ask them to do the assignment during class time. They are not going to do it on their own. They have four weeks left. I will try.


  1. Daryl, yeah, wow. This really gets at the issue. We are all gung-ho and technologically. We all know - or suspect - the benefits that can be had from 2.0 learning. But perhaps our students have more immediate concerns. We need to make sure our activities are where the "rubber meets the road" so to speak. Otherwise, it's hot air on our part. (Sorry for all the cliches). These are serious issues. Good luck.

  2. Don't intend this to count as a "post" so much as to say we all struggle, are frustrated, have our best laid plans go awry. Some of our best successes come from stinging failures. Hope your semester closes well, and if not well, fast! :)