America’s Future: Learning to Learn

At AVID tutoring today (I am a volunteer at the local high school), I finally convinced a group of young ladies that we should actually learn.

As part of the tutorial, the students are supposed to complete a worksheet with notes. They fear that if they discuss questions with me and each other (which is the real goal of the tutorials), they will not finish the worksheet and will therefore lose points in their AVID class.

Also, they only want to learn “what they are supposed to know” to do well on tests. They are afraid I might actually get them interested and they might waste brain cells on something that will not score them grade points in the near future.

Fairly typical stuff for teenagers, unfortunately.

Today I think I finally proved that we can discuss questions, complete the sheets, and cover the material they need to know for tests, but not before they put up quite a fight.

I actually had to take their textbooks away from them so they would not just copy information from the books.

The funny thing is, in New York, I was paid (two years ago) $90 per hour for private tutoring and $150 for AP tutoring. Here I am offering something for nothing and I have to fight them to give them this.

At the end, however, they admitted that we accomplished all of their goals AND they learned more than they would have just copying out of the textbooks.

A breakthrough!

Teenage girls can be stubborn, but no more so than me–especially with my extra decade-plus of stubborness experience.

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