Monday, September 21, 2009
Welcome to college--and congratulations on joining the ranks of the insolent whiners. Your classmates disrespect the proffie, and you disrespect your classmates. What wonders you'll achieve for the classroom atmosphere!
Yes, discovering student apathy is disheartening, sometimes shocking, maybe even rage-inducing, but you're not doing anyone any favors by roaring off on a superiority trip ("Dear RYS, please confirm that I am in fact a glorious student by agreeing that my classmates are lowly urchins. XOXO, Your Fave Student Evar"). Rather than letting your classmates exclude themselves on group work, why don't you practice a little transparency and tell your lazy peers--before you finish the assignment--that you'll happily deny them credit if they don't contribute? You don't have to wuv your classmates, and you don't have to (shouldn't) do their work for them, but since you already know that they're not listening to Proffie, it's worth trying to appeal to them as a peer.
No, it's not your job to guide your classmates (because I know it's extremely strenuous and woefully time-consuming to jab your neighbor and say, "Put your phone away or I'll punch you in the jugular"), but I'm fed up with students strutting around like autonomous narcissists who figure they just happen to be inconsequentially lumped into a building with some other autonomous entities. We are a community, human beings who mutually influence each other in ways big and small; we may have nothing in common except omg I totally have those shoes!!! and a presence in the same classroom, but the very least we can do for each other is behave like human beings who recognize that, by golly, I can't build myself up as thoughtful, feeling human being by the sheer force of my free will! The people around me actually affect me! And I them! Maybe, just maybe, I should try to work with these people!
I know, I know, it's a blast to use your mighty ego as a wrecking ball, but just think of the novel possibilities: if you leave it at home, you'll be able to channel all the energy it takes to lug it around into something constructive!