Classes started in the junior high school where I work a few weeks ago. Our students who have tested into the gifted program were given the opportunity to take a foreign language this year. This is one year earlier than the typical curriculum in our system and it will give them high school credit.
Today, one of the girls who had opted to take Spanish was talking to me and she was quite upset. She asked me if I thought she should drop the class. I told her it was her decision, but that she should discuss it with her parents. This seemed to frustrate her and she asked if her entire schedule would change. When I told her it probably would, she became even more distressed. I took this apparent hesitation as my opportunity to try to convince her to stick it out a little longer to see if she would adjust to the class.
I asked her, "Why don't you want to take the class?" and she replied that it confused her because everything was presented in Spanish.
I told her, "Umm...it IS Spanish class." She replied that she understood that, but she just was not aware that she would be forced to learn so many Spanish words.
I finally convinced her to stay in the class by telling her that I knew for a fact that 2-year-old children in both Spain and Mexico, and many other countries, were able to speak Spanish, and if they could do it, then couldn't she, a 13-year-old gifted student, also do it?
She thought about this for a while and then finally agreed that, yes; she should in fact be able to learn the same things a 2-year-old could learn. She did not know why it was so easy for them, but so difficult for her.
Sometimes, my job is just too easy.
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