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RE: AEN hs rant (pond scum)

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From: Patricia Knott (pknott_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Sat Feb 28 2004 - 09:04:36 PST


I very much appreciate and understand Larry's metaphor on pond scum
> life providing fresh water that sustains life, one
> has to use their hand in a back and forth manner to push surface water away
> thereby making available water beneath to drink....

Our youth are very thirsty and they, maybe maybe get lazy because
they don't understand where the scum came from and maybe maybe they
choose the scum because it's easier or they don't know the difference
between what lies on top and the fresh underneath.

They have been given layers, stacks and piles and expected to understand
how the piles and layers started. They don't understand stagnation they
understand getting by.
If they can survive on dirty water they will choose it if they never taste
fresh water they don't know the difference.
The differences seem, to me, to be getting blurrier and blurrier
and what is the litmus test?
Kids don't know how to swish a hand anymore they only know how to push
a button and we need to provide the buttons to the bottom of the pond.

I must say I am disturbed by the statement
> ...they are lazy lazy lazy kids. "Minimal mundane mediocrity" is their
> middle name.

If we come to the classroom with this kind of preconception then of course
we only get scum. I know how you feel Larry, I feel the same thing about my
AP kids. But how did they get to minimal and mundane? Certainly their
responsibility for striving does not lie solely with the educators, but
certainly the angst is laying on our shoulders.
So how do we combat the minimal mundane? Somehow I have to find a place
between my way and their way. Scum is yucky. I don't want to put my hands
into it, but if I'm desperate to drink I'll have to. How do we make our
kids desperate to drink?

Patty

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