I taught them to mentally multiply a double digit with a single digit. Most of them had understood the concept. Some were already able to mentally multiply and quickly.
“Teacher, it’s difficult.”
“Teacher, explain one more time please.”
I explain again while the rest patiently re-learn. After a few more questions, I see his hand up and he answered correctly.
‘How come you are suddenly able to answer?’
“I just told myself that I can.”
“Teacher, how are they doing this?”
I explain again while the rest patiently listen. After a few more questions,
“Teacher, I’ve stopped trying.”
‘C’mon, everyone else can catch up.’ (While pointing to a new question)
“I didn’t see that you wrote another question.”
The mind is a powerful tool isn’t it?
One student decided to tell themselves it can be done even though they felt it was difficult. Eventually, they caught up with the rest. The other student decided they were done because it was difficult. They were so done they did not even notice a new question, a new chance to try was up on the board.
One decided it could be done despite it being difficult, and it was done. This student looked for a way to get it done. A solution.
The other decided it could not be done because it was difficult, and it was not done. This student gave reasons for not being able to get it done. An excuse.
So the next time we find ourselves stuck or giving in, let’s ask ourselves: Am I coming up with a solution? Or am I making an excuse.
If we come up with a solution, chances are, the problem we think is a problem, will be sorted.