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Hidden Rules Hints for Tutors A review by Linda Evans,

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1 Hidden Rules Hints for Tutors A review by Linda Evans,
I was told about Ruby Payne’s work by my sister, a K-12 teacher, who has attended her workshops – they helped explain a lot about my students’ decisions that baffled me…hopefully it will help you too! Hidden Rules Hints for Tutors A review by Linda Evans, Based on the works of Ruby Payne, PhD

2 Notes & info This is just an overview of some of Ruby Payne’s works
Dr. Payne also does workshops for school districts around the country For more information, please check out: “A Framework for Understanding Poverty,” and “Hidden Rules of Class at Work,” or on the web: Please don’t switch your brain off when you hear the term ‘poverty’…it doesn’t just mean economic standing… it’s much more There will be some generalizations for explanatory purposes, and occasionally, I will be blunt (not politically correct!) This is just the highlights of Dr. Payne’s work for our purposes….read more!

3 Adding to your tool kit You’ve learned about different learning styles and how they impact teaching… You’ve learned about technology and how it can assist, or detract, from learning/work… You may know about personality types from Meyers-Briggs or True Colors, how personality affects relationships, and how we see our world… NOW, add another tool to your professional toolkit, and see how our cultural values act as lenses and limiters, creating hidden rules of behavior, and more… Here’s your chance to learn a new tool, and teach it to others. My personal suggestion is that you never use the phrase ‘poverty values’ because that has too many social implications – speak instead about ‘the way things work here at school versus the way they work at home.’

4 It’s like we’re not speaking the same language…
Area Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 Money Use now Manage Invest Personality For Entertaining For Stability For Connections Food Enough Quantity Quality, Taste Presentation Clothing Style Expression Quality, Norm Designer Time Present Moment Future Historical Education Abstract Value Critical to Success Tradition, Connections Language Casual Register Formal Register World View Local National Global Love Conditional/Likes Conditional/Worth Conditional/Standing Focus Survival Achievement Strategic Connections Possessions People Things Legacy Family Matriarchal Patriarchal Who's Got $ Look at each area, then read down the three columns to see how each economic group tends to respond. Of particular importance in education is the issue of language. Compare Group 1 “casual register” involves a small vocabulary used primarily for entertaining stories told to friends with great emotion. In Groups 2 & 3, “formal register” is known, which is the language of college. Note also that Group 1 is concerned with only NOW, so planning is not emphasized & study time is left up to chance. Also compare Personality: In Group 1: class clown is valued; in Group 2: the brain; in Group 3: the one with important connections. Compare Money: Group 1 spends it now, often on survival or entertainment (so money shortfalls often interfere with schooling); Group 2: budgets it to last as long as possible; Group 3 would not apply for scholarships even if needed (Chart adapted from A Framework for Understanding Poverty, by Ruby Payne, PhD)

5 So what do we do with this?
Most educational institutions & employers are of the culture/values of Group 2 There are increasing numbers of Group 1 coming into those venues without knowledge that there are differences in culture/values Our job as educators is not to say “Your values are wrong, mine are right,” rather it is to say: “There are different rules for different places – yours are important for your daily world – but let me help you become familiar with these rules too.” You can spend days on that chart – saying ‘Oh, That’s why he/she did that….’ For now, we’ll talk about why it matters, and what you need to know as a tutor about some of your students in order to tutor them effectively.

6 Shouldn’t everyone just conform to my rules?
Discounting the use of another set of rules says: “Your culture is irrelevant and wrong” Unconsciously insulting someone’s cultural values and coping methods is unprofessional – try instead to be curious, learn about their values & share yours As an educational institution, we owe it to all of our students to provide the tools to be successful in life; providing education on hidden rules can ease their path to success This is a two-way street, both people win Well, we may secretly want the world to run our way, but it rarely does…and when you are tutoring, your #1 goal is to help the student in a respectful way.

7 More on Levels of Language
Issue Casual Register Consultative Formal Register Poor assignment turned in to instructor “This is a do-over.” “I can’t accept this the way it is, please revise.” “This assignment is not acceptable in its current form.” Student doesn’t understand assignment “I’m sick & can’t turn in my homework.” (doesn’t know how to ask for help) “I’m not sure exactly what you want on this paper, can you help me?” “I’d like to make an appointment with you to discuss assignment 3 before it is due.” Language is so important to college. People who use casual register rely on a small vocabulary that won’t be adequate for college papers – they also have difficulty with breaking papers down into outlines and sticking to a logical flow of a story (beginning, middle, end). Avoid making assumptions that students know of alternative ways to construct papers – model outlining, show research methods, discuss plagiarism and the importance of references. What level of language is used in most college syllabi, tests, & texts? What language level is required for college essays? What level of language is used for the college catalog or policies? Can you think of examples of how to help students translate from casual register into formal? How can you encourage students to build their vocabulary? Don’t assume students are familiar with parts of texts (glossary, index, test Q)

8 Hidden Rules in Education
Students must understand the formal language of education and critical thinking. Students need to put school first. Work should be arranged around classes. Students are responsible for learning. Time management and planning are necessary. These are the most important hidden rules in education. Go back to slide 4 to see how these conflict with Group 1 and , sometimes, Group 2.

9 Impact on teaching/learning
Lack of formal register/academic language causes students to (1) fail to ask questions in class, (2) procrastinate on written assignments, (3) commit plagiarism, often without knowing what it is, or (4) cheat, out of desperation School work tends to come last in priorities: suggest planning ahead, turn things in early Critical or abstract thought are often not learned previously, need help making that leap May avoid taking responsibility (blame others) or have lots of personal problems that interfere with learning & assignments This is how students in Group 1 may react to the hidden rules of education. They may have a low self-opinion combined with a façade of self-sufficiency – it’s a challenge to provide help & encouragement, especially when critique is viewed as criticism and dislike. It helps to praise first, then make improvement suggestions. Grading systems are often viewed as punishment. Word choice can inspire or devastate. Non-verbal cues are trusted more than verbal – take note of your body language.

10 What can I do? Help Group 1 learn the Hidden Rules of school:
Clarify the need to put school first in order to make things better for their family (rather than for “personal achievement”) Clarify the need to arrange work around their class times, network with other students to get notes if they are out sick, & contact instructors appropriately Instructors are not responsible for learning, the students are; help tutees know learning styles/limits Importance of deadlines, planning the semester in advance, use of calendar & alarm clock Having plan B (ex. preventive car maintenance) Refer to Master Student class; or teach planning, goal setting, basic money mgmt skills Refer new students to orientations, advising, & other support systems often; help students build their own resource toolkits. They may not have any support at home for their educational goals.

11 Suggestions for tutors
Follow positive tutoring model: Sit beside, not across from, tutee Build on the positive Ask specific questions Give tips on how this concept would be shown on a test, or how they could display mastery Model asking for help yourself when you don’t know the answer or process Model appropriate language use & share ways you have improved your own vocabulary Help students build their own study skills, tools, peer support systems Tutors can play a critical role as a peer/guide to the educational system. As a fellow (or previous) student, you have important knowledge to share, not only about your subject area, but about navigating college (and life!) You are looked to as a leader (sometimes a lifesaver!); sometimes that role is uncomfortable – consult your supervisor for help! It is not helpful in the long run to create dependencies, so encourage networking.

12 More suggestions Need extra-clear instructions with very clear deadlines – remind about using a planner and asking the instructor for clarification Break down big assignments into small parts with interim deadlines, ask for rough drafts Give tours of resources or refer often to library, advising, financial aid, counseling Refer often to the syllabus, assignment lists Refer to course or lecture outlines, study guides Use multiple learning styles, encourage students with awards, positive reinforcement One of the most crucial points is that what ‘group’ one belongs to has nothing to do with intellect or potential – education, and specific individuals that make connections, can make the most important difference in a student’s life!

13 Parting thoughts… The Hidden Rules of different environments offer challenges and opportunities to increase understanding Our different cultural values are not ‘excuses’ for inappropriate behavior, but they may provide explanations for ‘why’ Accountability first requires explanation of requirements and rules – don’t assume everyone knows your ‘rules’ Mutual respect should be the foundation of all relationships; it takes effort to build it Most people don’t intentionally disrespect others, but sometimes it is an unconscious word or gesture that conveys disrespect to a student, employee, or educator. Understanding the role that the ‘Hidden Rules’ plays within the workplace or school setting will help improve effective communication and learning. It will also provide a foundation for future success.

14 References Payne, R. K. (1996). A framework for understanding poverty (3rd ed.). Highlands, TX: Aha! Process Payne, R. K. (2008, April). Nine powerful practices. Educational Leadership, 65(7), Payne, R. K., & Krabill, D. L. (2002). Hidden rules of class at work. Highlands, TX: Aha! Process Please see these and other books of Ruby Payne’s for more information about how cultural values of poverty affect learning, working, and breaking the cycle.

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