Things Are Going South By Going North

, , , , | Learning | September 4, 2018

(I have a student I am seriously trying to help at school, but she has been very difficult so far. This is not because she is a bad person, but because she is lazy and doesn’t seem to understand basic concepts. In this case, I am taking care of the group while they work on a social studies evaluation.)

Me: *sees her paper* “[Student], sorry, you have a mistake here. Look. The instructions are to draw an X on the correct answer. So, on the question, ‘Which way does the Sun come out? East, South, or West?’ Just choose one.”

Student: *looks at her paper where she wrote “North” under the other options, then at me* “Yes.”

Me: “Okay, look, let me erase this. So, is it… East, South, or West?”

Student: *grabs her pencil slowly and writes “North” in the same place again*

Me: *wanting desperately to bang my head on the floor* “[Student], listen. Choose one. You don’t need to add options; just draw an X on one of these.”

(I erase “North” again.)

Student: “Yes.”

Me: “[Student], every other question you have drawn an X on, without problem. Just listen… I’ll give you a hint: the answer is not North.”

(I noticed the student seemed to be thinking, so I moved on to another kid. After a while, she called me because she didn’t understand another question. Out of curiosity, I checked the question that was driving me crazy. She wrote, “North.” She also failed that exam. Between me and another coworker, we managed to prepare her for third grade, but it took too much effort on our part, and she only just managed. We had her tested, but got no relevant result. I still worry about her sometimes.)

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