#dailywritingchallenge Day 2 – Purpose

When I saw the title of today’s blog challenge, I immediately went to thoughts of, ‘what is my purpose?’ and, ‘what is the purpose of a teacher?’ I have read some of the other posts on these themes this morning and I think that they have been covered well and much more eloquently than I can manage. My blog post idea presented itself to me this morning in a different way.

I have a student in my class who has been struggling as of late. He is very intelligent, very vocal and great character to have in the class. His issue is that his written work doesn’t directly correlate with his mental abilities. He finds it hard to understand why all his great ideas end up on paper with reversed letters and spelling mistakes. The same happens in Maths lessons. Rather than face up to the facts, he procrastinates. He asks to go to the bathroom or starts constructing something with the tools around him. I don’t blame him…he is in Year 2.

He is currently at home with his younger brother and his Mother. Unlike many of the students in my school, his Mother is a single parent and works extremely hard to support the children. This means she has been unable to balance home schooling with her own work requirements. I am sure this is a common story in the UK and other countries at the moment. She is very apologetic about the lack of work being sent to me. I, of course, have told her the pressure is off.

The child’s approach to life is based on whether things have a purpose (I got there in the end) and so his Mother and I have been having a discussion to pin down ways that some tasks can be made more appealing. It is not an easy task. It requires removing all the obvious, adult points of view and breaking it down into what are the most important things in a child’s world. It sounds simple enough but my own personal goals are in a different world to that of a 7 year old boy. There are clear ones like food, sleep and love. There are however secondary things which differ from child to child. Some will not worry about the bigger picture and will bound through these days with reckless abandon. Others will be more observant and will notice the changes around them; the change in adult behaviour and the lack of social interaction with peers amongst many others. The child in question is definitely the latter. We are all, as adults questioning our own purpose during these times of reflection. So what is he thinking? Does he feel he has a purpose? If he can’t compute this then can he be asked to find purpose in random tasks being thrown at him from his teacher?

Lots of questions and ideas I aim to tackle this week…

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