“I Can’t Force a Student to Care” Wednesday January 18, 2017


It’s been two days and Tyrese hasn’t done any work in class. None. Hasn’t even written his name on an assignment. He’s been staying in with Ms. Baker for recess and I’ve been giving up my lunches to keep Tyrese in so he can make up the work he doesn’t do in class, which might be reinforcing to him, which will only result me giving up every lunch hour for the rest of the year to try to get him to work.

Granted, we give him more work to do and he misses out on recess, but he still refuses to work independently or in group during class time.

Today, I caught him looking at a book and asked him to show me his math work. He rips out the math pages from his workbook, rips them, and throws them away.

He lost all his points on his clipboard and I told him he can try a longer version of the assignment during recess.

I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking, “Awwww, the work is probably too hard for him and he feels stupid because he doesn’t know how to do it.”

Maybe. But if you give him easier work, he won’t do it because “I already done dis. Why I gotta be doing stuff I already done?” And if you give him work that’s too hard, “I don’t know how to do dis. You din’t teach us dis. Why I gotta be doing stuff I don’t know how to do?”

So no matter what he refuses to work. And if you sit down with him and help him through it, it’s a little better but that would mean that he would need a one-on-one aide full time. Which he doesn’t deserve. I have a girl in my class who is probably gifted. But she’s incredibly lazy and finds ways to short-cut assignments. She deserves an aide to modify work to push her to her potential.

Tyrese should be working alongside the custodian so by the time he’s adult he might be able to work a mop without somebody helping him.




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