The first semester is winding down. I have graded all of their formal papers, homework, quizzes and have almost finished grading all of their midterm exams. Now, I am assigning comments on their conduct. Participates in class, interested in subject matter, late assignments, puts forth minimal effort, excellent classwork, disrespectful, negative attitude. As I do this I think about the idea of self fulfilling prophecy; when something is said about a person enough times that person becomes that way. It’s almost as though they are conditioned to be that person.
As a teacher I want to have a positive influence on my students. I do not want to condition them in a negative way to become that “underachiever”. I want to lift them up and not hold them back. However, I am also realistic and if one of my students needs to be called out to their parents for repeated bad behavior I believe it needs to be identified so it can be corrected. As a teacher, I need the support of the parent to change the student’s behavior for the better.
So, if you receive a good comment, you must be doing great. If you receive a questionable comment take it seriously and try to change your behavior for the better. It’s easier to make those changes while you are young. It is so much more difficult to make changes the older one gets in this life. Please understand my purpose is to mold you into a better, more productive, respectful, open minded, and kinder person.