Sometimes my students say the most interesting things to me…
Yesterday afternoon a few them received a consequence so they were outside my office writing an essay.
Afterwards one of them calmed herself down and was sitting in my office chatting. At one point she was complaining about how she doesn’t have a boyfriend (middle school problems) and stated, “I don’t understand why, after all I’m the whole package…” We both laughed. I laughed harder.
I’m reading over their essays now. One wrote about her goals for the second semester. After a paragraph or so about being more punctual and improving her grades she wrote, “Sorry, I confused, the best goal I have currently is to go watch Star Wars.” Aim high, my dear, aim high.
But I also loved what two of them wrote:
“It is crazy how I always know what is good and what is bad, and I still choose the wrong thing to do. Well, sometimes.”
Not bad in the self-knowledge department for a 14 year old girl.
Another wrote, “My goal isn’t literally making friends, it is just that I want to learn how to look at people without their flaws and only with their qualities, and learn how to get along with everyone.”
What I love about working with teenagers is their capacity to dream, their self-knowledge, and their drive to improve themselves. All the stereotypes about middle schoolers have some basis in reality, but there is also so much more behind their eye-rolling, laziness, and attitudes.
These girls goals for themselves are lofty. What are your five goals for the coming semester?