Thursday, October 19, 2006
Not blogging but singing
Every teacher knows the sinking feeling when they have a great idea or - if you're an English teacher - a super text and it falls like lead in the class. That's frustrating enough; you feel depressed or challenged depending on the time of year, but you have to keep going. Even worse, however, is when you have a bright student who hasn't realised what hard work is - or who simply isn't interested in improving. Many bright pupils can survive on their wits till about S3; after that success tends to involve application as well as natural ability.
I'm feeling a bit disenchanted today. I know blogs work as a great way of keeping work in English interesting and fresh, an answer to the old question "how do you prepare for an exam in English?" But like everything else, they only work if the pupil produces the original posts. The blog illustrated above, wildbank, has been grinding along in fits and starts because its owner had yet to grasp the concept of "little and often" - and the idea that, as footballers practise ball skills, writers practise writing skills.
I need a new metaphor along the "you can lead a horse to water ..." lines. Suggestions welcome! Meanwhile, I shall remind myself that I have a life, about which I shall blog when I return from another sojurn at The Cathedral of The Isles, where I have organised a weekend Singing Workshop for Mr Blethers to share his magic. I expect we shall all be working hard there, 'cos it's more fun if you do things properly.
Who needs to teach English?