Posts Tagged ‘Rolemodels’

The Teacher as Rolemodel

November 11, 2014

 

You can argue that sports stars and music artists never signed up to be role models. The same can not be said about teachers. When you decide to become a teacher, you are by extension signing up to be a person of influence over impressionable children.

As much as teachers are as fallible as others and are prone to poor judgement like the rest of us, doesn’t in any way excuse unprofessional behaviour. A teacher that comes to school drunk would be fortunate to get a second chance:

 

A Spanish teacher at a Connecticut high school was pulled out of class in handcuffs with very little explanation last week, and a local news station is reporting he showed up to class visibly drunk and pissed his pants in front of students.

Southington (Conn.) High School parents got a letter from the principal about the Thursday morning incident, but it went into very little detail: The teacher “behaved in an unprofessional manner… and was removed immediately from the classroom.”

An anonymous source at the school told WTNH that when students started taking video of the teacher, he flipped: “The kids were video taping it and he proceeded to pin a student up against the wall. He did make physical contact with a student.”

The unruly teacher was apparently handcuffed and removed from the school, but no police report was filed, according to Southington PD. WTNH visited the superintendent’s office to find out why police were never called and parents weren’t told what really happened, but assistant superintendent Karen Smith didn’t provide any answers.

The teacher hadn’t been officially disciplined as of Friday.

Click on the link to read Kids and Celebrities: A Reality Check

Click on the link to read Athletes Can Set a Better Example for Our Kids

Click on the link to read Classroom Resources for Teaching About the Life of Nelson Mandela

Click on the link to read Nine-Year-Old Stands Up for His School (Video)

Click on the link to read Inspiring Kids who Look After a Sick Parent

Click on the link to read The Perfect Example of Courage and Self-Respect

Kids and Celebrities: A Reality Check

February 23, 2014

charlotte dawson

“Academy Award winning actors have it all.”

“I’d die to become a TV star.”

“That sports star has it all. Money, a gorgeous partner, a mansion …”

“I’d be so happy if I had that model’s looks.”

 

Our children grow up believing that fame and fortune comes without its price. That the celebrities adorning their bedroom walls are the definition of happiness and that being well known equates to being well liked.

It’s all a lie.

Unfortunately, the events of the past month prove how false this theory is. First there was the giant of an actor, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, whose potential for further groundbreaking performances was destroyed at the hands of a drug addiction.

This morning I heard the sad news of the death of local model and television star, Charlotte Dawson. Apparently, she died as a result of debilitating chronic depression which she had experienced for some time.

Our celebrities are human. They make mistakes, they have bad habits and they have their ups and downs like we all do.

Instead of setting children up to believing that happiness lies in a bank balance or a golden statue, let’s show them how they can find some real happiness for themselves.

 

Click on the link to read Athletes Can Set a Better Example for Our Kids

Click on the link to read Classroom Resources for Teaching About the Life of Nelson Mandela

Click on the link to read Nine-Year-Old Stands Up for His School (Video)

Click on the link to read Inspiring Kids who Look After a Sick Parent

Click on the link to read The Perfect Example of Courage and Self-Respect

Athletes Can Set a Better Example for Our Kids

January 22, 2014

 

bird

I don’t buy into the expectation that all athletes have a duty to be role models for their fans. I think ideally every person, from every walk of life, should try to be a role model. There is no reason why athletes should be more responsible for their behaviour than anyone else.

But surely, the least they can do is show some humility and sportsmanship. I’m not asking for a perfect personal life or abstinence from alcohol, just the very basic adherence to mature civilized conduct on their field of play.

I accept that when you are young, have too much downtime and are idolised and hounded by fans, you are likely to find it hard to forever make the right decisions. But there is no excuse for unsportsmanlike conduct.

Below are two examples of behaviours that our kids really shouldn’t be exposed to:

 

 

Click on the link to read Classroom Resources for Teaching About the Life of Nelson Mandela

Click on the link to read Nine-Year-Old Stands Up for His School (Video)

Click on the link to read Inspiring Kids who Look After a Sick Parent

Click on the link to read The Perfect Example of Courage and Self-Respect

 

 

 

 

 

 

Don’t Look for Rolemodels from Our Sporting Stars

March 4, 2013

athl

Tiger Woods, Lance Armstrong and Oscar Pistorius are just some examples of sporting stars with immense talent who were looked up to by impressionable children only to be exposed as dubious role models.

Whilst it is quite natural for our children to seek out celebrities and athletes as role models, and some in fact live up to that label, it is important that children see that looks, strength, charisma and humour are subservient to empathy, kindness, integrity and respect. These latter characteristics are often found not by footballers or lead singers but my ordinary individuals within the community.

Recently I was alerted to the video I have attached below. It features a soccer goalkeeper fainting on the field out of heat exhaustion. Do the opposing players come to his aid and help him? Not at all! Watch what happens next:

Click on the link to read Our Real Heroes are Not Celebrities or Athletes

Click on the link to read Girl Writes Cute Note to the Queen

Click on the link to read Instead of Teaching a Baby to Read, Teach it to Smile

Click on the link to read The 15 Most Commonly Misspelled Words in the English Language

Click on the link to read Who Said Grammar Isn’t Important?

Click on the link to read Why Spelling is Important

I’m Glad I’m a Teacher and Not a Parking Inspector

October 31, 2011

Today I was fined by a parking officer for parking in a permit zone. I had only left my car for a few minutes, and clearly that’s all it takes.

On my way back from the shops I noticed a parking inspector processing a ticket by my car. I asked him what I did wrong. I pointed out the 1 hour parking sign. He pointed to another small sign among others that notified those with good eyesight that the spot was a permit zone on weekends but fine during the week.

I told him that I was only gone for a second and that I had made an innocent mistake. He didn’t pay attention. My daughter cried sensing something was wrong and becoming unsettled by the man’s presence. The man ignored her and kept on typing.

$75 – that’s what the tiny mistake cost me!

I realise that the man was doing his job. He probably has a wife and family to take care of and bills to pay. I don’t blame him for his actions or diminish his right to take on this job.

But ultimately, I’m so glad that I am a teacher and not a parking officer.

Parking officers serve no real value to the community. They are employed by council workers who should have enough revenue to waste through our overpriced rates. But no, through parking infringements, they have another steam of revenue they can waste in good measure.

Nobody is glad to see a parking inspector walking around. Nobody goes to lengths to welcome them or engage in small talk. Their job is to prey on people’s mistake and slug for an inordinate amount of money.

Teaching can be so much more than that. We can represent all that’s positive about this world. We can be mentors and role models. We can help children grow to reach their potential.

Unfortunately, we can also do a lot of damage. If we are not good at our job or our heart isn’t in it, we can be the manifestation of what is wrong with this world.

That’s the great challenge for teachers. To be the polar opposite of a parking inspector.

The Perfect Example of Courage and Self-Respect

April 12, 2011

The following is a clip I watched today that literally blew me away.  It is of a Pakistani actress by the name of Veena Malik, who in the face of harsh criticism by cleric, Mufti Abdul Qavi, stands up for herself in a profoundly courageous and inspirational way.  I don’t want to comment on the substance of their heated conversation (I’ll leave that to others).  Instead, I want to focus on the courage, integrity and strength of character displayed by Ms. Malik.

This is not something I can show in the classroom because of cultural sensitivities, but I strongly urge parents to watch this video.  The message that this clip sends to young girls in particular is potentially very powerful.  Here is a woman who refuses to be degraded, dictated to and walked over.  That is exactly the message we should be sending to our youth – be honest, courageous, proud and compassionate, and never let others manipulate, bully or belittle you.

Again I want to stipulate that I am not commenting on the substance of the disagreement between Ms. Malik and the cleric because that is not the purpose of this blog.  This blog is about education, and I can think of no better education for a young impressionable child than to see a model of self-respect, courage and integrity first hand.

Thank you Ms. Malik for standing up not only for yourself but for all people who feel downtrodden and unappreciated!


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