Reflecting Allowed

Maha Bali’s blog about education

The Choice to Change

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When my daughter refuses to get dressed, I always entertain the notion that she might not like what ai want her to wear. Often, changing the clothes or giving her a choice does the trick. Occasionally she really just doesn’t wanna get dressed and it’s just a struggle for power and imposing her will. If it’s too cold I heat the room and leave for a few mins. She may be in a bad mood or whatever and unable to express it. She comes around eventually.

I do something similar with students. If I find resistance to a reading (happens sometimes) or assignment (doesn’t happen much, but can happen with individuals) I consider either changing it, or providing more support/scaffolding. Occasionally, no matter how much individual attention I give a student to understand what is making them resist doing the work… I can’t reach them. Thr best I get is all their assignments done in one go at end of semester (have had two such instances). I always imagine they might have something personal going on that they just couldn’t share with me.

So I am just thinking this really simple thought: sometimes what we need to do when someone doesn’t want to change is give them a choice. It may or may not work. But it’s start

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