STORY BY MARCUS BARBOUR & MARQUIS BARBOUR. PHOTO BY MARQUIS BARBOUR. FNN REPORTERS, BLOW PIERCE BUREAU
APRIL 22, 2014. We chose this story and interviewed Mr. Milton because it was interesting for us to see what an all-boy class experience would be like. We wanted to see what happens without girls in the classroom.
FNN: What are the advantages and disadvantages of an all-boys class?
Mr. Milton: The advantages are that there is no inappropriate touching or inappropriate language between boys and girls. The disadvantage is that the boys have a lot of energy. They would fight more than girls would.
FNN: Do you and your students share a common theme or bond?
Mr. Milton: We’re a family. We are all there for the same goal. We have to stick together because we have to learn together.
FNN: Have there been any fights from the beginning of the year to now?
Mr. Milton: There’s a fight almost every two days. They argue very often. You’re raising boys into men and leaders, so naturally, there are conflicts we deal with each day. My job is to redirect and focus the competition and tension to build their strengths “in” the class so they can be better students “outside” the class.
FNN: If one of your students has a bad day what do you do?
Mr. Milton: I address the child immediately. We don’t want any barriers to learning in our class. Sometimes a call home helps me to understand the situation. If I need to be firm I will. On the other hand, and more than often, I give the child the support he needs to get himself together. I keep a close eye on him and the students around him.
FNN: Is It better to work with an all boys class than a mixed class?
Mr Milton: It is easier to work with an all boys class because there are different boundaries and interactions between boys than girls. Some of the methods and strategies called for in teaching an all boys class are totally different from a mixed-class environment.
FNN: How do you feel about being the the only teacher in the Friendship family to teach an all-boys class this year?
Mr.Milton: I love it! I am inspired to have the opportunity to have this job. I owned it from the start. I felt like let’s see, what can happen with them?
FNN: How did the boys respond to being in an all boys class?
Mr.Milton: I don't think they realized it until they sat together, I don't think it really played a part on how the boys felt.
We think an all boys class is a good way for the boys to interact in an environment without girls. There are less distractions when girls are present, and therefore, they are more likely to stay focused on their work. On the other hand, we live in a mixed-gender society so why not boys and girls in the same class. It may even teach boys to respect and appreciate young women.
Marcus Barbour and Marquis Barbour are 7th Grade FNN Reporters for the Blow Pierce Bureau