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Yr 12 who won’t say what they think they moan later - WWYD?

(8 Posts)
EvilTwins Mon 12-Feb-18 13:34:06

I teach a lovely, small group, and we’re not in a school so it’s pretty informal. It’s drama, so really creative, lots of focus on communication etc etc.

I have one student who has started to get into the habit of not saying what they think, about a number of things, but then moaning at a later point and I’m not sure how to handle it as it’s starting to get on my nerves.

A couple of examples... we are working on a play at the moment - performance is during the first week back after half term. When I first gave the scripts out, we all had a chat about it and there were various opinions - some like it, some not sure, some not keen. Student was non-committal, but then wrote the initial essay about it very negatively - but by then it was a bit late to make changes. Fast forward to two weeks before half term - I asked them all to make a group decision about whether or not they wanted an extra rehearsal day. They know I need to sort my kids out if I need to go in, and I made it clear that it needed to be their decision so they would have ownership. They all told me the day they wanted to come in. We discussed it again on Friday and they all agreed - there was some discussions about timings and so on. Then yesterday evening, they sent me an email saying they can’t come. The reason is that they has to look after their younger sibling in school holidays. Presumably if this was the case, they would have known two weeks ago when I first asked the group to decide about a half term rehearsal. I’m frustrated that they didn’t say anything sooner as we could have found an alternative. I’ve emailed their parents and suggested a compromise.

Any suggestions? It’s tricky with 6th formers!

MaisyPops Sat 17-Feb-18 20:57:02

Maybe I'm a bit harsh on this but if/when i have 6th formers like that i give them a pep talk containing the following:
-Remind them they have chosen my subject at post 16
- they have chosen our 6th form
- they should theoretically be able to be treated like young adults
- This is not y11: nobody is going to throw them an intervention lifeline at the end if they don't pull their weight.
- Their future is in their hands.
- i will give them all the help and guidance i can and will bend over backwards to help, but this is linked to them doing their part

Most get it quickly. Some think i'm joking and i let them fail (usually mocks or coursework first drafts) and that's their wake up because they see people doing what they should be doing well.

EvilTwins Sat 17-Feb-18 22:15:33

I think it’s definitely pep talk time. Student in question did come in for the rehearsal in the end but only stayed til lunchtime (everyone else stayed til 4) It will impact on their grade - not because they missed 4 hours of rehearsal but because it’s indicative of their level of investment.

NannyOggsKnickers Sat 17-Feb-18 22:23:24

At my place we have a saying about Yr12 ‘Just Yr11 in posh suits’. They aren’t that different to the kids who took their GCSEs. It takes ages to ‘break’ a sixth form group.

Just keep telling them where the line is.

I often find I get to know them better during coursework mentoring so I try to do some of that early in Yr12. To kind of earn their trust.

MaisyPops Sat 17-Feb-18 22:35:11

We say that nanny. Some are Y11 in jeans and trainers.

I had a really arsey grumpy moment with my new lot this year because they seemed ti think they could turn up 5/10 mins late with a coffee because they're 6th form. And start packing up early because they're 6th form. Or could be let out early for lunch etc. Or deadlines aren't actually deadlines. Or bring food to class. Ummm. No.

Sure, if we come to a logical end of a lesson with 4/5 mins to go then I'll let them out earlier rather than wait to the bell. Sure, I let them politely excuse themselves to the loo and trust they wait ti an appropriate break. Sure, i let them have coffees in with them. But you get your ass to class on time, work hard and meet my deadlines.

DrMadelineMaxwell Sat 17-Feb-18 22:37:43

Sounds like our staff meetings.

MaisyPops Sat 17-Feb-18 23:07:56

Sounds like our staff meetings.
I wish it was more like some of ours.
Ours there's 2-3 of us in the team who will throw ideas around, challenge excessive new initiatives to protect the work/life balance of staff and students (no they don'r need extra breakfast club sessions) and then 2-3 who will say yes and go alomg with whatever the person leading it says, then don't do their job properly, then bitch when people point out they need x y z and it still hasn't been done.

GHGN Sun 18-Feb-18 10:49:44

I teach some of the loveliest girls I have ever met but I still read them the riot act every now and again. It is a hard time for them as mock and real exams are getting closer and some of them realise that they haven't done enough. They start to panic and act differently. A firm reminder about the smallest thing can help them to get back on track.

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