Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Trojan Horse method of Engaging Disenchanted Students




The use of a back-door approach to 'jimmy' your child's mindset can be used to circumvent a lack of motivation and engagement. Children and young adults with attentional deficits or executive function skill deficits find it troublesome to focus on that which they find cumbersome, and with the manifestation of the learning environment in U.S. Public schools, the top-down instructional format is exactly like trying to fit everyone into a square hole.  Hence, many students hit grade performance obstacles, and experience feelings of frustration, anxiety, and even anger. Their parents look to help and remedy the situation: they sit down to do home work with their children, they help them stay on the study path, and hopefully, look to advocate for their child in the school.

If you are looking for another pathway, then here is one. I argue that pre-teens and adolescents are grossly under-challenged by their public schools, aside from being treated mostly like cattle. The public school educational culture cannot cross the river to become a clinical educator culture until privatization of the public school system occurs. Without these teachers who adapt and customize to their students then we might as well throw the towel in the ring. The cows might as well come home. Don't wait for Batman to emerge from some public school. She and he can't because their job is on the line if they start acting like bonafide professionals. No teacher who receives a salary can speak up, strike out on their own instructional path or question authority. They would be told to shut-up or else. No one wants to lose a cushy job in this environment. No one. 

But the students get short-changed. 

We can offer an alternative. It is not the only one. I propose using a Trojan Horse strategy to getting kids to use executive function skill tools and approaches to launch ventures they are passionate about. I posit that we build entrepreneurial kids, renaissance kids. By getting kids engaged in being community entrepreneurs great strides can be made academically. Kids shift their mindsets on managing their time, pacing, planning, brainstorming, prioritizing, and organizing when they are passionate about what lies ahead.

Helping them start, launch, monitor and refine a venture that they are passionate about adds to their sense of accomplishement, and polishes professional job skills that are simply not taught in high school or college. Morever, teenagers  and young adults with executive function deficits or attentional deficits thrive when passion is brought in. The Trojan Horse simply was a conduit to shift their value system assigned to the use of self-management tools. By repositioning the value and benefit of organizational tools, the child or adult is free to move forward in a way not possible before. What's more, entrepreneurs must problem solve constantly and be round the clock innovators. The importance of having an established process becomes key to dealing with the unexpected. Thus, mental flexibility goes from being a common deficit to being a heavily-used skill in the arsenal of the aspiring entrepreneur.

Here is a crowd funding campaign by a mountain climbing student of mine. He will be climbing Mt. Kilamanjaro this summer and wanted to raise funds for hospitalized children. This is community entrepreneurship:

Here is a crowd funding campaign I started last night at midnight:

Another student of mine is developing a lacrosse head stick venture. He likes to customize and personalize them for athletes, is in the midst of networking locally, is setting up marketing events that follow the sport tournament cycle, and is delving into the use of social media as a multi-fasceted marketing tool. He is 13 years old only. 

Do you have a child or young adult child who needs to get their proverbial derrière in gear? Consider reaching out to me. I am easy work with, down to earth, and get down to business.

Check out services offered at the 'training' page on www.CoachBill.US or email me.


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