Thursday, January 26, 2006

Classroom Realities

Gracie over at Today's Homework writes:
So far this year, I've taught my kids two different ways to add physical description to writing. Their semester exam writing prompt was to compare and contrast the old school with the new one. I told them that I would be scoring for written expression by looking for physical description. Maybe twenty out of all my kids put in any physical description at all. Of those, less than ten used more than simple minimal adjectives. "The classrooms are yellow and cold." "The stairs are steep."

I couldn't believe it. The vast majority of my kids totally ignored what they were supposed to do -- and sensory description is something that they have been doing since the third grade.
Consider reading the whole thing.

Motivating the unmotivatable is one of the hardest things that we as teachers are tasked to do. For all too many teachers, what happened to Gracie is an every day occurrence.

Given the realities of today's public school classrooms, is there an answer to this age-old challenge?
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