Growing Up Can Be Hard for Students – Teacher’s Corner


Teacher’s Corner
Five thoughts about students growing up:
  1. It is normal for students to want and not want things at the same time.
    • They want a delicious piece of cake, but they also want to fit in their designer jeans or have an athlete’s body.
    • They want to do well in school, but they also want more free and fun time.
  2. Students working on growing up don’t want to give up being taken care of just so they can be the best students they can be.
    • They don’t want to give up smiles, pats on the back, shared lunches, or any of the things that make them still feel close to people.
    • They want people to remember they like to be hugged (but maybe less often in public, depending on their age) .
    • They want someone to fix them their favorite foods.
    • They don’t want to lose all their “baby” feelings just so they can grow-up.
  3. Students working on growing up want to be responsible and independent, but they also want to be taken care of by those they care about – they want to be both independent and dependent at the same time.
  4. If students working on growing up find ways to let people take care of them once in awhile, including taking care of themselves, they will grow up  more successfully.
Writing Prompts and Discussion Topics 
The following are based on the blog, “Teaching Kids to Wait – Part 1
  1. Discuss the meaning of ambivalence. What is it? What causes it? What should a person do about it?
  2. Grown ups like to be taken care of once in awhile. They might need a hug, want someone to fix their favorite food for them, or want to soak in a warm tub or take a  nap on a cozy couch. Do you think this is weird? Why or why not?
  3. Do you think it is possible to be independent and dependent at the same time? If so, describe how that might look. If not, explain why you think it is not possible.
Teachers, you can use this blog in classrooms. Here are two ideas about how.
  1. For middle or high school parenting or child development courses:
  • Use the blog for discussion topics
  • Require students to research the topics and agree or disagree with what the blog is suggesting.
2.  For all courses, especially English Language Arts:
  • Use the blog for writing prompts for paragraphs, theme papers, journal entries, class starters, etc. Have students read the blog and respond to:
    • Do you agree with what is being said about kids? Do kids really act, think or feel that way?
    • Do you agree with what is being said about parents, grandparents, teachers and child caregivers? Do or should they act, think or feel that way?
    • What would be your advice on this topic?
    • What was left out of this article?
    • If you were a parent, would you use any of this information? How?
Why can this blog be a useful teaching tool?
  • Students that see connections between their coursework and their lives do better in school.
  • Most students will either be parents one day or have children in their lives that they care about, so the topical information can help them build their knowledge about children and parenting and develop a positive image of the type of parenting they want to do.
  • The new core literacy standards adopted by most states call for frequent writing in all courses.
  • Newly developed end-of-course assessments to be used by many states will require that students demonstrate that they can think critically. These prompts help students practice critical thinking.
  • Newly developed end-of-course assessments to be used by many states will require that students demonstrate that they can analyze what they read. These prompts help students practice analysis.

What do you think?

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