And He Has Turned Them In.
Shane’s first quarter report card intrigues me.
He made the Honor Roll, which is great. He has more A’s than B’s, which is also great. What interests me, though, are the letters next to the grades.
There are two columns: Participation and Assignment Completion.
I never really notice the Participation column, except when someone says that Shane isn’t participating in class. Shane is quiet, and I was quiet as a child. We are similar in that way – but only barely. I never, ever, ever participated in class if I could help it. Speaking above a whisper was not in my nature.
Shane does participate in class. He talks. People talk to him. He answers questions in class without the mouse-like squeak that accompanied my responses as a youth. However, on his report card, once in awhile a teacher says he isn’t participating at the highest level.
In the case of his first quarter report card, his Spanish teacher said that he participated substantially less than she would like. When we had our meeting, I explained to her that he is quiet – and she agreed that, even when he didn’t appear to be engaged in the class activities, he could always answer a question about what was going on.
Shane hears everything. He is always engaged. Just sometimes, he doesn’t show it.
Still, she marked him as “sometimes” participating, rather than “consistently” participating. This bothers me, although it matters not a whit.
What does matter, actually, is the second column: Assignment Completion. In every, single class, Shane has “consistently” completed his assignments. And he has turned them in. Shane’s assignments are done, complete, on time, in good form, and submitted by the due date.
This makes me happy. It makes me so happy, in fact, that I am considering dancing a little jig around the room. Because I have suddenly realized that assignment completion is possibly the most important factor in getting good grades – and Shane is doing it!
If he keeps doing it, he can keep getting good grades. He can keep showing teachers that he cares. He can keep giving it his best effort. And someday, hopefully, all that effort will translate into allowing him to get into the college of his choice.
Maybe he doesn’t speak up in Spanish. But he finishes his work, turns it in, and gets good grades. What more could anyone possibly want?