I find myself in this consistent and significant rut whereby I am complaining, nay whining may be a better description, about my dislike of the tutoring program I am involved with, as well as the entire public school system which houses it.
I meet my ride share comrade on Tuesday and Friday morning and even though we tried to make a promise not to discuss the many trials and tribulations faced at our sessions it happens that almost instantaneously our mouths begin running off with all the bad involved.
There are definitive flaws in both the system and in the motivation of many of these kids. Those two things have been established as a given. The point of this post however is self-focused. I actually sat back today, while one of our rants wound down and thought about why we are so quick to criticize. All of the tutors, and there are five of us, seem almost hyper critical lately. So I began to ask myself some questions.
Are the expectations that we bring to the program unrealistic?
Are we delusional in anticipating progress in the activities of our students since they have now been in this program since September?
Are we judging these kids by some standard or measure that is set way to high-meaning are we expecting adult behavior and motivation that can’t possibly exist at these grade levels?
Consequently, if we as tutors are expecting too much and have these expectations because of directives associated with this program then where does our responsibility lie in speaking out to change the program?
…and on a personal level…
Why do I find it so easy to complain and seem to get satisfaction when I do find fault?
What inadequacies in myself am I hedging around by looking at the negatives rather than pointing to the small triumphs?
Why is it seemingly rather apparent that these sessions leave me irritated, frustrated and defeated, yet I continue to dig myself deeper into this pit of gloom and doom?
Did I go into this job thinking I was going to be a savior, a bright and shining example? Did I find that the kids who “have it” already don’t truly need me there and the ones who do need me (meaning tutors in general) are so far down themselves that I (with my limited training) will not be the enlightened power who pulls them from their academic abyss?
Do I whine simply because I cannot be the person who changes things?
There doesn’t seem to be a To Sir With Love happy ending coming into my life as a reward, and maybe selfishly that’s what I expected.