Submitted by Jared Sanchez, Teacher -
So much of who we are as a school goes beyond traditional modalities of education. As a teacher, we often find ourselves inspiring the timid, encouraging the faint and forging the strong. Late last year, I found myself in a very familiar situation that we often face at Opportunities For Learning.
A student needed one-on-one math support for a particularly difficult section in his math unit. I noticed he was in a bad mood and overcome with frustration. Understandably, any normal student who works on math will get frustrated on occasion. However, as I worked with this student, I noticed that his feelings were greatly impeding his ability to get any support. So I laid my cards on the table and explained to him that the reason he was working with me was so that we could understand this section - which would help him pass his exam, which would then help him complete his math requirement, which would help him graduate, and so on and so forth. He was a bit surprised that I took the time to talk to him about the “big picture” of this math tutoring session. I asked him to lay his cards on the table so that we could get to the bottom of his frustration and, hopefully, begin to understand his math.