“When a flower doesn’t bloom you fix the environment in which it grows, not the flower.”
– Alexander den Heijer.
When my group decided to make a blog centered on our at school experiences, I’ll be honest, I was overwhelmed. I couldn’t think of anything to write. So this being my first blog post ever, I hope I do my group justice.
In my 6th Grade Class, we start a lot of our Language Arts assignments with a percept, so I instinctively am doing the same here.
Today, I told my class that I signed them up for a nationwide challenge in Mathletics, an online math program that is provided by our school. It is a competition where students compete in activities based on the math curriculum to earn points which will hopefully earn them rank and prizes. As you can image, this got their blood flowing, got them pumped up, got them excited. But then I had to tell them that in order to earn points they would have to incorporate the use of Mathletics to their at home and after school agenda. Boo!
At this point the attitude of the class dropped, not all but most weren’t as exhilarated and it was at this point that I thought of Heijer’s quote.
When thinking of needing to “fix the environment” there’s obviously the kids who dislike homework, not that these activities are homework but it can be considered school stuff at home, not cool. Then there are those with the extra curricular, complaining that with the homework they already have, and practice, and dinner, and being tired, and having to shower, and brush teeth, and chores and this and that; there is no time. Just like with anyone who hears this story, I’m sure you know how this environment needs to be fixed but that’s not what struck the chord.
I had a student come up to, on the side, away from the class, to tell me, that he would not be able to earn his share of points. Confident in his skills and work ethic I asked why.
“I don’t have a computer at home. I don’t have a phone or Ipad. I don’t even have wifi…”
With all the technology being used in schools and classrooms all around the nation, I stopped to think about this competition. And how many students from coast to coast, who like my student don’t have what most people consider to be essential. People who use the internet for entertainment, for cat videos and memes, for hating and commenting and the a thumbs up. People who don’t realized that not having wifi, while being a #firstworldproblem, is an actual close to home, real life problem that needs to be addressed, needs to be fixed.
As Heijer, so eloquently stated, there is nothing wrong with the flowers, its is how it grows, where it grows, and when it grows…