Friday, September 21, 2012

When I grow up... (Guest student author)

Another guest post, this time including a student contribution.
These remnant columns sit in front of what college?
Last time we saw the Arapahoe Basin Ski Area (A-Basin) off Loveland Pass in central Colorado.

This week, a parent visited school wanting to express his appreciation for a job well done, or at least begun.   In his hand, a hand written note from one of his son’s teachers.  Accolades were in order due to the students efforts on an essay about goals.  The assignment began with a pre-write, including supporting details, explanations and a summary.  A few draft starts and a final version. Here are the results:

My goal is to be a special operation team captain.  The first step for me to take would be to get good grades school.  I need to go to college, I also need to study hard in school and turn in all my homework.  Next, I will make sure not to drop out of school and get a college degree.  I will always come to class prepared and pay attention.  If I achieve my goal then I will have good paying job and I will have a good life.  The best part is having parents that are proud of me.
Regarding this young author, rest assured, his parents are already proud.  They would do anything and give all their lives for his success.  As we examine this application to teaching we wonder what it means, to have similar unconditional love for another, where the things they did, had no bearing or influence on our acceptance on the person as an individual.  This does not exempt their behavior, mitigate the consequences that often reach farther than just those immediately involved or excuse mistakes with no accountability.  But it does mean we deliberately, that is based on a decision, choose to accept a person, regardless of their behavior.  (THIS DOES NOT MEAN WE ACCEPT THEIR BEHAVIOR)  Alongside them, we work to help them identify their issues, develop plans and follow up to confirm those plans are adhered to with fidelity. 

What motivates a student to express these thoughts?

A current level of security based on a leadership, prior experiences that encouraged attempts and a quest for a risk free environment where chances are encouraged and failed attempts don’t make us failures.

Our students want us to be stronger than their problems.  They need us to demonstrate confidence in the face of adversity.  They want heroes they can look up to in real life.  Are we prepared to be those examples?

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