Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Opinion Changes

It's always nice and surprising how my first impressions of students and students attitudes in class improve (generally) as the year starts rolling. I guess they get used to a new teacher and how tests are given and what's expected of them. They get out of their summer mode of thinking and start actually doing work and coming in for tutoring.

So far I can think of these students:

"M" was twice absent on calculus test days. When he made them up, he complained about the difficulty and how I didn't give a formal review sheet (I told them what was on the test and they had old homework and answer keys to study). I told him that I didn't want to hand hold him, and if he needed to review, then he had to put out an effort. This last test he VASTLY improved his scores, and in class he's actually been participating.

"R" was goofy in class and talked talked talked. He was not doing well on precalculus tests. Lately, he's been coming in for tutoring and zeroing in on specific things he was having trouble with, and he's grasping things much better.

"E" has a surly haughty expression in calculus class and always seemed annoyed with everything I did. And yet, she advocates for herself: can you repeat that? can you wait a bit? can you explain that another way ("in English" another student pipes up). She really wants to grasp things, and now she has started cracking the occasional joke.

"M2" is STILL absent frequently in precalculus class and he's still constantly sleepy in class, but he makes up all his work and when he comes in for tutoring, he asks intuitive questions and has unique, clever ways of solving problems.

There are more, but I love as the year goes on how my kids grow on me.

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