Wednesday, January 14, 2009


Sorry – another posting on education!
I spend some of my time at school sitting down with individual pupils - listening to their problems and, when appropriate, offering advice. This is a particularly important time for Year 11 pupils. With only some 15 school weeks before they sit their GCSE examinations, this often means trying to motivate students (particularly boys!) to get off their backsides and to start focussing on their impending exams. I’m finding it particularly difficult this year with one boy (with whom I actually have a very good relationship). He’s very bright, articulate and incredibly lazy! He really doesn’t like school (although he reckons he wouldn’t turn up his nose to one-to-one tuition in all his subjects!). His mock exam results were well below his target grades and he says he just can’t be motivated to do any work. He reckons he’s “always managed to turn things round at the very last minute” and that he needs this sense of danger/potential failure to push him into action. I’m left feeling incredibly frustrated by my inability to motivate him to modify his thinking and, as a result, am left with a huge sense of my own inadequacy and “lack of tools” to deal with this pupil.
At the end of the day, I know he’ll be absolutely fine, but that doesn’t help ME right now!
PS: He had one of his Science module exams on Monday and, somewhat proudly, told to me that he’d actually done some revision over the weekend!

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