Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Frustration and Behaviour

I was having a conversation today at school today talking today about finding ways to better support students in the primary years.  We talked about how frustrated these learners become as they get older and find the work harder and harder.  They begin to notice that their peers are at a different level.  They are given work that they don't get.  They are asked to focus for extended periods of time.  And so the conversation moved to talking about frustration.

I was thinking about the book I have been reading off and on, Lost at School.  I was trying to put that frustration into perspective during our conversation.  I was trying to put myself in their shoes and it is hard to do.  I have never really struggled in school so I needed to think about other situations.  I am a very even tempered person who rarely gets really upset.  There are basically 3 situations that will usually cause me to swear and become frustrated.  Missing a glorious scoring chance in soccer will usually result in a few inappropriate words and since none of my soccer mates are on twitter I will say that happens VERY infrequently...  Then there is driving in Vancouver.  The last is putting together furniture from a store that shall remain nameless.

The furniture example was the one I chose to use.  It is one of the few times where I really feel like throwing something out a window and tend to use the occasional bit of profanity.  Some of those instructions, in my opinion, are horrible, the pictures are hard to figure out and I usually have to restart a few steps here and there.  Some of these projects should only take around 30 minutes and usually take over an hour.  There are people out there who don't even need to look at the instructions and can just put them together.  Those instructions are easy to follow for some and not for others.  What if those students are experiencing the same frustration that I feel when assembling furniture?