Productive Failure

on

I have always had a problem with learning foreign languages.  Especially when it comes to the grammar. Memorization is not that hard if I put my mind to it, but learning the grammar is a struggle.  Last semester I took German 1, and I passed it.  Not because I was good at it, but because the class was set up in such a way that it was fairly easy to breeze through.  This semester not so much.

At the beginning of this semester I started German 2.  It was without a doubt harder.  She expected us to take quizzes every few weeks on the grammar and the vocab.  For the first quiz I only studied for a day or two, and surprise surprise, I failed it.  I think I made a 64.  Ouch.  But, this failure taught me that I could not just cruise through this class to pass.  I had to actually work at it this time around.  Something I wish I had realized last semester so I would not have started so behind this semester.  But, it’s too late for that.  After the horrible failure of that first quiz I started to work much harder.  I tried to listen better in class, take better notes, and participate and ask questions.  I started to study the grammar every night for at least a couple of hours, and I slowly started to understand it better.  I work as a waitress, so during the slow times at work I started to study my vocabulary.  By the time the next quiz rolled around I had a strong grasp of the vocabulary and I at least vaguely understood the grammar.  Like I said, it is my weakness.  Yet, I came to class as prepared as I could be and I passed the quiz with an 86.  Not the best grade in the world.  But for me, in this class that I hate because I am not good at, that was a 110.  My failure taught me that I had to work harder and stop coasting.  It taught me that just because I was not naturally good at something did not mean that I could not learn it.  Its been rough having this class, but I have learned some German, and I have learned from the class over all.  Our failures are valuable.  They teach us in a way that success without failure never could.  Without failure to compare it to, success would not taste as good.  Just like happiness.  Without sadness being happy would mean less.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s