I hold my tongue on a daily basis while I'm at school. There are countless things I wish I could say, but do not because...well there not school appropriate. Now what I want to say and what I actually say are pretty similar; just with a little niceness thrown in. I feel that educators have to be ever so careful with our words and have to tip toe around the truth. When if we just said what we wanted to say maybe things would get better.
I took this approach with my 7th graders on Friday. The 7th graders are a mess. Full of drama and lack focus on what really matters. I have given countless pep talks and said a lot of nice things, but it was not working.
So on Friday I got real with them. I had them think about their future, what they want to do and how are they going to do it. Then I pulled out my old IEPs, read some amusing teacher comments from my past regarding my behavior in school (apparently I was a hummer in class and roamed the classroom). I also discussed how school was unbearably hard and how I hated having a disability. School only became easier when I stopped complaining and got down to business. I worked hard and did not give up. Giving up would be easy, but would not provide me with the future I wanted for my life.
I went on and told them if I was a student siting beside them I would be incredibly distracted by their behavior. Paying attention to the teacher or to the student who is twirling his pencil would take top priority in my life.
They are the first class that I brought out my IEPs and discussed my disability with. I hope my honesty brought attention to what they are doing and how its not helping them reach their true potential. I guess time will tell if this worked with them.
Parent conferences are these week
...that's all I'm sayin'...