Since the age of 8, my step father and mother had me and my brother enrolled in many academic programs. From Kumon Education Program, Sylvan's Learning, and Princeton Review. It was embedded in the both of us that education is key. Neither of us had a problem with learning because we truly enjoyed it. We were the smartest kids in our schools. We probably could have been Valedictorian for our Class if we weren't "scholastically inactive" from time to time. For us, it was hard to relate to the "dumber" kids, not knowing that they were not dumb at all. Gerald Graff explains this in Hidden Intellectualism, how children who are not into the "books" are not exactly the kids heading for failure. Graff illustrates the opinion of society towards the youth inferring that if kids are out in the streets or playing games instead of doing word problems that they're not so clever. However, in many cases, this is false. It's not that children cannot read Tennessee Williams' Street Car Named Desire, but that they do not care about Blanche and her egoistical persona to go along with her undertone alcoholism. Graff believes that we shouldn't base students ability on the text but on how they interpret a piece of text (that being from a magazine or maybe even a tweet). Also, the idea of judging a student based on academic grades may alienate the student from those outside of the classroom walls, diminishing their success in lieu of enhancing it.
Before I tackled this piece, I first had to come home from work. I didn't get straight into the text but watched Teen Mom 3, relaxed then ate. Right after, I attacked the literature. I wanted to annotate but decided read into the text more while I answered tonight's blog. Although Paisley Harlem (my kitten) tried to distract me while I read, she caught the hint and laid down near my Laptop.
While I was reading the text, I tried to relate with the character that Graff was describing. I didn't take notes but when i came across words I wasn't familiar with, I used context clues to figure out the words purpose in the sentence if not figuring out the word altogether. One can say, I took mental notes while I was reading, like Graff's confliction with his school smarts and street smarts, or his point of view of the education system antics to get through to their students.