As I often explain to teachers and administrators, we are more to blame for unmotivated students than we can ever imagine. Meaning you show me a class of unmotivated students and I can show you either a teacher who isn’t motivated or a teacher that does not believe in his or her students. I observed a near perfect example of this last week.
I’m in the teacher’s classroom and he tells his entire class the following, “We now have exactly 23 days until the state test. I’ve taught you everything you need to know in this subject for this year. Now all we are going to do is review until the test.”
Now this statement begs any number of questions, but I just have two. First, why would I be motivated to participate in the class if you are not going to teach me anything I don’t know for the next twenty three days?
Second, why should I even bother coming to class for the 20+ days of school that remain after the state test?
With the greatest single controllable variable of student performance being adult practice, I cannot say that I am optimistic that this teacher’s classroom will exceed my expectations this year.
Think. Work. Achieve.