They tell me they are embarrassed when they make mistakes. They freeze and mumble and cannot explain their work or their problems.
"I don't get it," is the phrase of the day.
Teenagers are the consumate risk-takers in so many ways. They take physical risks in playing sports, riding skateboards, and surfing. They take social risks by dressing in unique ways, playing music in public, drinking, and taking drugs. They take emotional risks when they ask a date to the prom or have sex. These are pretty big risks with significant potential consequences.
But asking them to take intellectual risks is completely different. Apparently forcing them to make a mistake in public is a much bigger deal than I imagine. And it's the thing they really need to be doing.
I don't get it.