A teacher came to me venting about a problem child a while ago.
New to the school, poor attendance, academically well below grade level. The kid has now not only stopped trying she is no longer even going through the motions.
We have all know this child in our own classes.
I didn’t have much help to offer. But giving up is not an option.
I learned from Janis Joplin that having nothing left to lose is freedom, and I had just finished a book by TED talk author Amy Cuddy, so I tried one of her tricks.
I pulled the student aside and asked her to be a part of a science experiment.
I explained that if you stand like a super hero for a minute a couple times a day you feel like you can be powerful. Like you can learn or try or contribute.
So we did it. Outside where we were alone laughing at ourselves we struck a pose. Mine was like every old school white male superhero ever. Standing akimbo with my face into the wind.
Hers more from the hood with an air of Beyoncé or Drake to it. I thought to correct it for a moment then let it ride.
“What’s your superhero name?” I asked her this week, while filling our second minute together on Tuesday.
“Lady K! What’s yours?” she offered and asked without missing a beat.
I told her.
Lady K feels powerful. Her alter ego mustn’t be far behind.