Day 40 (of 189) the joy of frustration
I freely admit that there are times I guide students into frustration – a zone where the brain can do neat things as long as it’s not in that zone too long – but I don’t leave them there…we always work on the importance of dipping in and then out of frustration.
It is part of a “coding mindset” in my opinion, but even one of my “regular visitors” shared that “sometimes it’s fun to get frustrated” – and a discussion confirmed:
a) as long as it isn’t for too long
b) it was connected to a preferred(ish) activity
c) there was someone to rescue them if they got stuck
We were talking about the frustration he was feeling about losing control of himself which has led to him losing some of his outside freedoms (still going outside, but with a Me with him) but he connected it nicely with an attempt at solving a 3D maze:
Some things are easier to get frustrated with (copier jams) others are harder but delve deeper…and there can be joy in working out and solving something that is causing you frustration (good reminder to start taking out the jigsaw puzzles our family works on when the weather gets colder…)
and sometimes when we get frustrated we don’t want help….or is it just me? I’ll mutter “everything’s fine” when I’m not fine (most recently with some chronic pains) and I need the reminder (wife and kids have been helpful) telling me to take a nap or walk as a distraction….which is where the “joyful” part comes in – it’s a reminder that it’s a change fornow, not forever….sometimes we don’t want wha we need…
But it’s easier to plan and practice when not frustrated. So I’ve started using a magical “cube of destinations”. Where the learner or adult can make it clear where the student needs to be…or go… and practice it when calm so that when escalated or de-regulated, a prompt can help. We were going to create some visuals, but I noticed he was using an eraser as a Two-Face coin (Batman villain who would flip a coin, yes/no) so we personalized a prompt…
Now we will see if this can help him get out frustration when he gets into a zone of frustration…
Turning those moments that can create frustration in our brains into moments of success when we can distract or solve our way out of the frustration. As I ask to my learners when we are doing coding… or PBL… or a new topic… Is it possible we will get frustrated? (Yes!) Is it okay to get frustrated (again Yes!) Is if okay to stay frustrated? (No!) – but I will ask them how long they’ve been frustrated before we can be rescued – there is no set amount – it is personalized depending on where the learner is in their pursuit KD “joy in frustration”. Looking forward to seeing f I can help today’s learner not stay frustrated t long nor too often!