March 24, 2008

The Passion Quilt

I was tagged by Nancy as Nancy’s Garden Spot with a Passion Meme. It’s a Meme for educators.

First, let me state, that I’m honored that she would put me in the same league as educators as I feel like I just dabble in it. I don’t have to deal with classrooms, issues with children in their homes or that they may have with learning. I have just two students who I’ve been assisting, or as I like to tell them, ‘I just shine a little light in the dark corners.’

Both my students have no learning disabilities or family troubles, and both want to learn, but something occurred that discouraged them. In both cases, it was a teacher issue. (Both are Alg II students if you are new to reading me, different schools, one public, one private.)

The boy I tutor has a good teacher, but the teacher is exceedingly intimidating. It has caused the boy not to want to ask questions or participate… as it has with the majority of the students in his class. He now has the highest grade, which I think speaks volumes, not for what *I* have done, but for what he has done in studying and for what the teacher is lacking in skills. I wonder how many children in his class no longer believe in themselves.

The girl came to me with attitude and complete loss of confidence. She was pulling straight A’s and an F. The F was her math class. I am going to say that part of the problem has been teenage attitude, but I also think the teacher has some emotional issues and will probably not be returning next year. My student got an A on the last test and was the only kid in the class to get the Extra Credit… something that assisted in pulling her F to a low B. The parent/teacher conference allowing her to redo a failed test, bringing it from a 25 to a 35 helped too. (She was only allowed 10 points max to her grade, which was generous in my book.)

Every little bit helps.

So that’s where I am… great kids, not so great teachers, and I’m just kind of steering the boat. Maybe I just plugged a leak.

But what I say to them always is… and will continually harp on them about… “Believe in yourself… because I believe in you.” Throughout my tutoring them, I constantly tell them, “You can do this. You are smart. You just need guidance… everyone does. Believe in yourself.”

They may get sick of hearing it, but they haven’t started rolling their eyes yet. But key is, I truly DO believe in them. They’ve not given me reason not to. I believe in them. I want them to believe too.

I have even gone so far as to tell the girl, “Don’t hang with people who don’t believe in you. That goes for boys. If you have a boyfriend who doesn’t believe in you, find a new one.”

But I follow that in my general life. I believe in myself. I don’t hang around people who don’t believe in me… people who will tear me down. I’ve had teachers who didn’t believe in me… and I had friends when I grew up who didn’t as well. I’ve proved the teachers that didn’t, that they were wrong… and those friends? Well, they aren’t friends anymore. They aren’t in my life.

So with that… I had TGOO scan in a picture for me, that they have hanging on their refrigerator. It is Mr. T at 18 months old and Ringo at 3 ½ years. This is my folks’ side yard… and Mr. T Believes.

We all love this picture. He believes.

Believe In Yourself

So that is my recurring theme when I meet with my students. Its one of the reasons I want them to read The Alchemist. It’s a short little easy read, but it’s about a young shepherd who is following his dream… he struggles, but he believes in this pursuit and is not going to let obstacles overcome… even when they seem insurmountable.

The rules for the meme are:

Post a picture or make/take/create your own that captures what YOU are most passionate for students to learn about.

Give your picture a short title.

Title your blog post "Meme: Passion Quilt."

Link back to this blog entry.

Include links to 5 (or more) educators.

My picks….

Mrs. Who… who amazes me with her stories from the classroom, dealing with Florida’s poor education system and making the best of it with the young people who come from all walks of life and all sorts of families. And I found out she did it, so scratch that! Go read her post... HERE.

VW, who like me, is tutoring in Math. (She's now been tagged twice...)

Peggy U, she doesn’t have a blog, but I so admire her and what she does with her students. Her amazing understanding of the subjects, the constant search for more information and how to convey it to her students, and her thirst for more knowledge make me wish I was more like her. So… if blogless Peggy U will do this… I will post it here on my blog.

Denny, who many may not know, was an educator before he retired. He was an instructor for IBM.

Gradual Dazzle, who is an amazing woman, teaching High School and who I have not intentionally left off my blogroll, but I just suck at blogroll maintenance. (I have her bookmarked.)

And I’m going with a 6th here… I met her and I so wish my kids could have her for high school science as I know she’s an amazing teacher…Holder of Holder of Useless Knowledge.

I know so many more educators… and I am hoping they all get tagged. I know some GREAT educators out there… and I want to hear what they have to say.

Posted by Boudicca at March 24, 2008 10:12 PM | TrackBack

That photo is fantastic. It needs to be on motivational posters in every classroom, everywhere. I love it.

Where were you when I was not getting by in Sequential I because I had douchebag teachers?

Posted by: Erica at March 24, 2008 11:55 PM

You and Mrs Who are too kind. Thank you for including me.

Posted by: vw bug at March 25, 2008 05:11 AM

I turned several shades of purple ... Thanks, but I don't deserve it. My success rate is not as high as yours! But I do have a couple of students I will be in touch with for a very long time. You meet some wonderful people this way!

Posted by: Peggy U at March 25, 2008 02:27 PM

.. the photograph is perfect...... 'teaching' is 'caring' after it has been condensed to its thickest sauce....

Posted by: Eric at March 26, 2008 08:10 AM