Last week my afternoon students were immature and disrespectful to put it mildly. It’s a challenge with any group of ‘at-risk-youth,’ (aka high school dropouts ranging from students who were homeschooled since the womb and former felons) to create a community and break old habits. It’s even more of a challenge when five of your students all attended the same previous alternative school AFTER all attending the same high school (and getting kicked out).
Recipe for disaster.
Or, like today: recipe for amazingness.
I’m not sure if I passed their hazing test, but they all seemed surprised when I let them out early. They stood outside the door and talked about ‘ballin” and I was able to heckle one young man who clearly wasn’t dressed to play a game of pickup basketball. It’s about connecting, and somehow my GIANT white-girl-former-basektball-playerness was enough to hang with them for a minute. And one dude even said that he learned something about himself today, which is a miracle all around.
Sure they’re chatty, and sometimes off topic, and I wanted to poke my eyeballs out last week, but it can all change in a minute.
Like, how, at 12:50 today, my friend’s mom died.
Yesterday she was alive. And today she died. And my friend went from having a sick mom, ciorrosis of the liver, given 5 months to live (which was changed to 5 days in the span of less than a week), to not having a mom…planning a funeral…all the emotions attached to the death of a parent.
Two extremes. In the blink of an eye.