Monday, November 17, 2008

It's amazing

I just had one of those moments that is truly amazing to me.

We started our unit on basketball today and all of my classes have been enjoying the beginning techniques (primary) and more advanced techniques (intermediate) of the game. As everyone knows, the students that come to me each day come with different levels of experiences and knowledge. This is always very evident in basketball.

In one of my classes I had three students who found it more entertaining to point, laugh, and make fun of a few students who were struggling. It's a given that there will be students who struggle in each of my classes and I strive to make the gym a safe environment to be in. I emphasize each year that the gym is a place to make mistakes and through those mistakes students will learn. What was so unique about this instance was that these three individuals were students whom I know struggle mightely in the classroom. Whether it be math, reading, or writing these guys had the gall to make fun of their classmates at the one time when they needed their support. They even chose the students who excel in the classroom and students that would never laugh or point fingers at them when they can't figure out a math problem or read a passage.

This turned out to be a great teaching moment for all of us. I don't believe that these students were thinking clearly. Maybe they were excited to finally be better at something. Maybe they had never noticed how respectful these classmates are when they are better at something. Whatever it might have been, this moment made it very easy to make them think about their choices. I believe that after our discussion they will all be better people.

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