Organizing Dialogue, Experience and Knowledge for Complex Problem-Solving

Fair Discipline

September 6th, 2012

All the kids came back for the second Friendship Dinner, and this time Dominic was able to join. He had swimming class the first time we met (last week).

Group grading worked pretty well: the kids were realistic in most categories. I thought they could do a lot better in one area (which is why I had given them a lower score than they gave themselves). We agreed on their earned grade in most categories although they were kinda random with just shouting out; hopefully it won’t take too long for everyone to think about this seriously.

We also agreed on a two-warning discipline plan.  The first warning is verbal; the second warning includes a brief time-out in the hall. If that doesn’t do the trick, the third time they have to leave and cannot return until the next week. Hopefully no one ever pushes it this far, but probably someone will, some day, and it will be good that we all came up with the plan together.

Meanwhile, everyone is still wondering, What is the book about?!  I finally figured out the answer from my point-of-view, now the challenge is to explain it.  Curls’s dad was the first one to ask after I had finally come up with the right word. “Interaction,” I told him. “But I’m still figuring out how to say what that means.” Hakim nodded. I explained that we were already talking about the difference between friendship and frenemies. He agreed with me that we are off to a good start.

A few days later Yazmin let me know that her son, “Mr Branford,” is excited about coming but will be away until September. ”So,” she said, “you’re a writer.”

I waffled, “Well….”

She quickly interrupted, “Claim it!”

I laughed. “I’m really an ethnographer.”

“What’s that?”

“A kind of researcher. The writing depends on what the kids say.”

“Alright. You’re a writer!”

Okay. But the kids and me really are writing this book together!




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Categories: A Book, Reflexivity, Series

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