Saturday, April 4, 2015
Academic Madame Librarian With a Weekend Thirsty On Learned Helplessness.
But she is not. She is 20, with a host of learning disabilities, and a whopping hunk of helplessness. Her mother told me this, in an impassioned whisper, after I suggested that Mom should let A, who was sitting back, not taking notes, and not asking questions, do the work on her own.
I thought that this was an overzealous helicopter mom, and that A would learn the stuff on her own. I... think I was wrong.
She's been into the library every day this week, and we work together for at least 20 minutes. Last night, she spent two hours bouncing back and forth from the reference desk to the table where she was working, and managed to write about two paragraphs.
She can't seem to get past copying out of the book. The information she copies is only vaguely related to the topic. She can't seem to retain information. She seems, despite some really SOLID scaffolding on my part, unable to analyze information. She can't hold the research question we came up with together (ok, I walked her through this part, by asking leading questions that would get me thrown out of a courtroom) in her head for the time it takes to write a paragraph.
She wants to be a social worker, but she hates school (with justification! She can't do the work!). She was working at a store in the local mall, and seemed to do well enough at it, before her mom made her quit. Her dad wants her to get a college degree.
Part of me really wants to find a way to call her parents, and tell them to stop pushing her to do college. Unless something changes, or she can find a way to work around her learning issues, college is a waste of everyone's time.
I've only had this happen once before, and that woman was a grown adult, living on her own. Just...
Q: What now?