Wednesday, February 22, 2017

It's Not About Them (It's About Us) | Blue Cereal Education

It's Not About Them (It's About Us) | Blue Cereal Education:

It's Not About Them (It's About Us)

The class after lunch is always a colorful time. Students have just had a rowdy half-hour of the most freedom they’ll experience during the school day, and most are loaded up on sugar, caffeine, and Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. 
It’s in that hour that I have Dalton, a fascinating young man who’s often dressed more professionally than I am and who I adore. I assume he’s somewhere on “the spectrum” – a little Asperger’s and a dash of OCD, maybe? Whatever, it’s all good – he’s genuinely warm and friendly, despite an ongoing, irresistible itch to provoke. It keeps the day interesting. 
Also in that hour is Tiandra, a theatrical young lady who will likely change the world, but who in the meantime occasionally falls prey to melodrama and emotional exhaustion. Her random outbursts in the name of social justice are technically dead-on, but her timing and presentation lack… refinement. She and her circle periodically break into explosive laughter over things no one else understands. But the joy – who can resent that?
Both of these young people are antagonists in their own ways – hence my particular affection for each. And they drive one another crazy in the most volatile ways. What starts with muttered comments or provocative grunts easily escalates into locked eyes across the room. Emotions escalate and volume rises. It can get ugly if I don’t find some way to redirect or quash it – Every. Flipping. Time. 
Teacher ScoldingThe conversations I’ve had with them individually in an effort to avoid actual disciplinary action (which I prefer to reserve for overt defiance or repeated, intentional disruption) are built on the same non-negotiable premise: your choices – your behavior – is not about them. It’s about you. We are not gracious or patient because someone else deserves it; we strive to walk with character and style because of who weIt's Not About Them (It's About Us) | Blue Cereal Education:

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