From: Sharon Wie
Submit: Post Field Note
Date: 03 Nov 1996
Remote Name: news-01.ucsc.edu
Two sixth grade girls.
Today was a mild day at Barrios Unidos. There were more UC students than kids today, so I didn't get such a great chance to work with anyone. The kids receive much more attention when there are more students, but there are, generally, less to observe and participate with. I did however, make some substantial observations. I was sitting with Filogoņo, who was playing with the puzzles. Next to him sat Annie and a sixth grade girl. She was drawing on the monitor words of her boy crushes. At the moment, I smiled and laughed a bit because the girl was extremely embarrassed and protective of her work. She printed many copies of the screen and thereafter hurried to erase the evidence on her computer screen. Although she didn't want anyone to see her work, she continued to make many other variations of I love ______.
I believe this observation to be important because it demonstrates the personal and social skills we can enhance in children. Because the girl was quite embarrassed, she would scream and yell when anyone attempted to look at her work. Others in the room grew upset and asked her to be quiet. On a personal basis, we can be there for this girl and share some of our own experiences, making it comfortable for her to express her thoughts and feelings.
Although nothing was really done (Maurice did ask her to be quiet, but his request didn't seem very serious) in response to this girl's behavior today, I think it is a good example of something else we can keep our eyes open and minds open to.
In answering Duane's questions concerning the government of "right" and "wrong" behavior, I think the community decides what is wrong or right. I believe that each individual also has his own government and may differ from another. I'm assuming that Duane was concerned about what behavior is appropriate at Barrios Unidos and who of all people decides that. In my opinion, as long as no one is being hurt, offended, or mistreated, and the goals of the class are achieved, the behavior can be flexible. I really don't know, however, how much my opinion means anything. The governor of our little "Barrios Unidos Sociey" is very unclear. I also believe that behavior can be changed without discipline. A mere compromise or coaxing can do the trick.