Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Motivational Technique


In addition to being a nag, I am pretty good at laying on guilt. My son never fell for it but it worked on my daughter for years. (Unfortunately, it stopped working her senior year in high school.)

I've been using it on my students and it seems to be working.

I told them I feel so bad that I can't motivate them to work. I told them that I must be doing something wrong, If only I were more interesting, or more forceful, they would be doing better. If I explained things better, they would be passing. I should be doing things differently to make them come to class every day and to never be late. I told them it was my fault they were failing and that maybe it was time for me to retire and to let someone younger, more enthusiastic, take over.

They said it wasn't my fault, that it was theirs. I stood my ground and they stood theirs. They promised to work harder.

I took out my secret weapon and held it to my chest. I said, every failing grade was like a knife being twisted in my heart. I turned it and winced in pain. They said stop. I said every missed homework, every private conversation twisted it deeper. They promised to do better.

It's only another few weeks. I hope I can keep it going. I hope they will still believe.

4 comments:

MiddleSchoolSecretary said...

Good luck with that. :)

I tried to the guilt thing with my oldest son but he would just laugh at me.

Lynette said...

I was glad to find your blog. I was looking for something light hearted and you pulled it off. I like your sense of humor. Counting down the days to where you are vactioning is great! I am counting down the days for summer break, 16 days! I am with you about being Pissed Off with the education system today. I have been teaching 10 years and seen lots of changes. I cannot imagine the changes you seen in 30 years. I like your guilt trip you put in the kids. I think if I did that my kids would agree with me. Thanks for your blogs. It is good to see sense of humor does exist in teachers.

Mrs. T said...

Impressive. Maybe I need to revisit the guilt.

Maestro said...

Yeah... guilt... guilt goes a long way withe me. I don't yell, I don't give out a lot of referrals, but I'll give a Catholic mother a run for her money in the guilt department.