Friday, March 9, 2012

Words of Affirmation

Bless my sweet 7th graders' hearts.  They don't know this, but I had a pretty crummy week outside of the classroom.  We've been doing Punnett Squares and today we talked about real-world applications (as if being able to determine the possibilities of your children's genotypes and phenotypes isn't real world enough).  It was more a day with scenarios and review.  At one point that I've noticed was particularly tricky for them, I stopped and asked if it made sense.  They said yes, and had a little dialogue for a few seconds about what had been confusing them but now made sense.  Several of the kids said things like, "I didn't understand this last year when I was in 7th grade, but I get it the way you teach it." and "You're a really good teacher.  Even when I'm confused and feel stupid at the beginning, you keep telling me different ways to explain it and it finally makes sense."  In my second 7th grade class, one of the kids was getting hung up on the idea of alelles and just COULD NOT seem to grasp the definition, which according to his work and his vocabulary matching, he knew prior to class today and either forgot or something else triggered a little confusion.  He had put his head on his desk and said, "I'm just a stupid head.  I quit."  It was SO sad.  I hate when they say things like that!  I pulled him aside and gave him a little pep-talk and he perked up and then, when he started really listening, he got it like that!  After about 2 minutes, this sweet boy was asking if he could lead the class in the completion of one of the exercises we were doing together.  Then, when they were working alone and I was going around and spending some one-on-one time with the kids, he asked if he could be a "student tutor."  Precious.  They really gave me the encouragement I needed to hear that I'm not such a shabby teacher after all. :)

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