In the beginning of Term 2, I challenged all my teenage students. They had gotten the hang of my expectations of them, so I felt the timing was right.
Are you going to give me excuses or find a solution?
Some of them grasped the concept right away, but not for a handful of them. I do not blame them for being able to find solutions.
One day, one of them wasn’t able to find his exercise book. He and his mates were given 30 minutes to discuss and complete an exercise. He needed to write his work down somewhere. I told him to figure it out. He ended up sitting for a whole 5 minutes scratching his head. I threw in an impromptu challenge: Everyone must complete the exercise within 30 minutes else, everyone’s work will be considered as submitted late.
They put their heads together and finally, concluded that the boy was to write the answers on a piece of paper to then be transferred into his exercise book.
The kids need to learn to think of a solution. If not on their own, in a group.
A few days ago was submission day.
“Teacher, you did not give us back our exercise book. How do we complete the homework?”
‘Your friend came to me before she went home to get her exercise book.’
“But you told us to find a solution, so I did the work on a piece of paper. Is that okay?”
‘Remember to paste or staple it into your exercise book.’
Help your children think of solutions. Getting angry at their mistakes will only leave them upset and in wonderment. Having to look for solutions will make them think, research and discover. Learning happens at any age. And with boundless and easy access to information, a lot is possible.