Teaching Basics | CS Connects Power Sources
“Joining together, linking with others creates an unified bond. It’s a powerful source.”
Stressed Out K – 12 Education Series 1.1
Attentive Observation Can Record Volumes
A long time ago there was an elementary school age student that had made it to the end of his tolerance rope for being tardy and was being threatened with an expulsion.
The interesting thing about witnessing the principal’s hallway rants was that this kids demeanor remained remarkably calm, almost detached. I saw his body language speaking loudest of all involved. So I advocated for the nine year old by asking to buy some time. I wanted to investigate the back-story. Didn’t know if there was one, but his posturing was just plain curious to me.
Interview as a Practice
After pulling the young guy off to the side of his opened classroom door I confirmed, “Things just don’t go the way we planned sometimes, huh?” His eyes gave him away. I hadn’t noticed them before. There wasn’t much there. His stare was part detached and part sleepy. I could tell by the crusty corners. A sign he hadn’t been monitored before leaving for school.
Not really sure why I asked if he had any older brothers or sisters there at school. But asking that question became standard customer service (CS) inquiry for the rest of my K – 12 teaching career. Jeremy responded, “My older brother comes by to pick me up after school.” So I asked, “Where is he coming from when he meets you here?” Jeremy said, “He gets out early from middle school.” Aha! (Joseph A. Almeida)
“What does everyone call him,” I asked. Jeremy perked up and said with a giggle, “He’s JR.”
Now it’s on. I’ll surprise JR by calling him by his name of endearment and inspire him to rise to the occasion with a little flattery. 3:23 rolled around and JR was posted right where Jeremy said he’d be. (Dakarai I. Aarons)
Mr. C: “Whatup JR? You know this kid? I’ve been impressed with the way he carries himself around here. Now I see it’s pretty obvious where he gets it.”
By now JR was acceptably solicited for me to be on his team and I needed him to post up in the paint while I drove the ball up the court.
“I need a favor from you.”
JR: “What’s good?”
Mr. C: “I need for you to suit up with this big brother thing and start getting little man up in the morning. Can you handle that?”
JR: “For sure.”
Mr. C: “I also need for you to bring him with you and drop him off here on you way to school. I figure he can get his eat on and chill in my classroom, maybe do some of that pass due homework from all those tardies he’s been getting.”
JR:“No problem, Mr. C. I got you.”
Expect to Win!
As it turns out the boys where living with a widowed grandfather who had gone back to working third shift to provide for the boys. I guess he was making it home between JR leaving for school and Jeremy waking up. Pops was elderly and often exhausted from working at the plant. Most often he didn’t realize that his grandson was still in bed until long after school started.
The whole thing was driving a wedge between the student, the teacher, and administration. A basic case of missed communication, primarily the school’s for not connecting with Jeremy’s family. Look for opportunities to service the customer throughout the day. Discover the areas needing CS and connect the power sources before getting all stressed out over low power levels. Flip it. Get your Mac on. You are a Customer Service Super Star. (The National Council on Teacher Quality)
This is a new series called Stressed Out K – 12 Education. Over the next several weeks we will explore classroom issues surrounding special needs, at-risk behaviors, student – teacher and teacher – parent relationships, and much more as it relates to reducing stress created from educational systems, narrow minded thinking of difficult colleagues, and the headaches of some one else’s undisciplined kids.
Copyright © 2009 | LaRon A. Carter “The Guest Teacher”
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