My students are now seasoned bloggers, or so they would like to think anyway. So as I was congratulating myself on a job well done, noting how much they were loving it, imagine my surprise when one student exclaimed just the opposite, “Do we have to blog, Mrs. Ripp, it is soooo boring.” For anyone that has taught 4th graders you know exactly what this sounds like coming from a 9 year old boy that would rather fight jedis than listen to me teach.
Ahh, but aren’t you the fun teacher, some people may think. Well, I like to think I am, sometimes, or as my husband would say, I lull myself with delusions of funniness, but anyone who has ever tried to play the funny teacher when the curriculum gets tough, knows how difficult it can be. So there I stand with my blogging pride in my hands, racking my brain over what I did wrong. I get it; this kid is not a big fan of school to say it mildly, in fact, he told me I was the perfect teacher when I stated there would be little homework in my classroom if students worked hard in school. Much to his surprise, he doesn’t understand that if he doesn’t work during class, then there is work to be completed at home. Strike one against me; I went back on my promise. I also promised him that blogging would be fun; strike two, blogging is only fun when you can write about whatever you want and get lots of comments from people all over the world. However, people don’t leave comments if you don’t blog.
So what do you do when students hate that spectacular idea that you love so much? Well, my initial reaction was to put on my big girl pants, along with my teacher voice, and tell him it’s his own fault for not writing blogs that people want to comment on. Glad I stopped that train-wreck. I then thought about it some more and realized that I don’t know what to do. Sure I have some minor ideas such as asking him how I can make it fun, giving him free time to write, promoting his blog on #comments4kids and so forth. But how do you reach a kid that already has decided by 4th grade that school is not the place he wants to put in his energy, his dreams, his wishes or his time? I leave that question up to you, my fantastic PLN, what would you say to this child if you were me? How would you help him realize what excitement he can gain from learning? And most of all, how would you reach him before it really is too late?