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  1. #1
    Senior Member run's Avatar
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    Default Teaching and Kids' Feelings

    I've been thinking for a long long time about this. My first question would be "what is the value of feelings?" This is a thick question. When is it appropriate to keep them in mind, and when does it hinder teaching? How do we define "hurt feelings"? A kid could be hurt by the lightest reproach, and I don't think the teacher should always change for the student. Also, aren't feelings subjective? I think they matter but they are subjective. Meaning, we can't know what they are. We can't know how a kid will feel, but I think it matters. I believe in not only logical morality, but objective morality. Yes, thats an apparent oxymoron/contradiction/whatever. But, trying to logically understand why feelings matter is still very difficult for me.

    Once we know the answer to those questions, we can choose between two approaches to teaching.

    the A way -- care about people's feelings. My therapist, once, when his daughter came home 4 hours late, said "I'm so angry at you, I'll talk to you in the morning." He advocates "respectfully reaming someone out". I'm curious what this means.

    the B way -- don't care. Respect is redefined. My marching band director takes this stance, and its obvious. "What happens on the field stays on the field. It's not personal." This view I don't understand, because I've never spoken to her about it.

    I don't think it's feeling-centered. If its not feeling-centered, then how do make sure to mind them, while teaching? I've had ADD for a long time, and I've forgotten so many things, missed so many directions. I would strain and try to pay attention, but sometimes I just couldn't process information. I felt like a real idiot.

  2. #2
    Strongly Ambivalent Ivy's Avatar
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    As usual, I'm a fan of the C way. IMO and IME different kids respond to different approaches. Some kids are approval-seekers and being punative with them can cause them to shut down or hate you and decide you're not worth respecting. Others are line-pushers and need a firmer approach. And there are many shades in between.
    The one who buggers a fire burns his penis
    -anonymous graffiti in the basilica at Pompeii

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    Senior Member run's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    As usual, I'm a fan of the C way. IMO and IME different kids respond to different approaches. Some kids are approval-seekers and being punative with them can cause them to shut down or hate you and decide you're not worth respecting. Others are line-pushers and need a firmer approach. And there are many shades in between.
    I'm more concerned with what is right, rather than what is effective.

  4. #4
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by run View Post
    I'm more concerned with what is right, rather than what is effective.
    Ahhh. I tend to think those are the same.
    Go to sleep, iguana.


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  5. #5
    Senior Member run's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    Ahhh. I tend to think those are the same.
    yeah. I guess to be more specific, doing what is right would lead the child to learn intrinsic values like responsibility, maturity and independence. Doing what's expedient for the moment might be waking him up for school because he slept through his alarm. He won't learn. It seemed Ivy is saying "well some kids should be woken up, some shouldn't be". That's addressing the diversity of what works for what kids. But, I think there might be a universal way to behave that is right and also make the best results.

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    Senior Member run's Avatar
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    Is it better for a kid to get yelled at, and better for another to have a different approach? It may be subjective. If it is, then we'd have to say that a teacher would have to just choose somewhere along the spectrum of niceness, and inevitably not get through to every single kid.

  7. #7
    Strongly Ambivalent Ivy's Avatar
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    What I'm saying is that there is no one-size-fits-all method of teaching responsibility, maturity, and independence to all kids. A feelings-sparing method might light up some kids, but just wash over others and not even be noticed. And an impersonal method might reach those kids, but make the first set of kids completely shut you out.
    The one who buggers a fire burns his penis
    -anonymous graffiti in the basilica at Pompeii

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    Senior Member run's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ivy View Post
    What I'm saying is that there is no one-size-fits-all method of teaching responsibility, maturity, and independence to all kids. A feelings-sparing method might light up some kids, but just wash over others and not even be noticed. And an impersonal method might reach those kids, but make the first set of kids completely shut you out.
    I think that which reaches to the second group is not the impersonalness, but the straightforwardness. I wonder if there's a way to be straightforward, and not be impersonal. I think we can teach kids things and not be an ass. Not sure how though. There is also an interpretation factor.

  9. #9
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    I think you can be straight forward and not impersonal if you go out of your way to praise kids who are making an effort as individuals and if you use good-natured humor when correcting.
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
    ~ John Rogers

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    Senior Member rainoneventide's Avatar
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    A teacher's primary role and goal is to expand their students' mind so they can go out there in the real world and be more independent/enlightened, and to do that each teacher has their own methods. It's not to be the condescending authority figure that always knows what's best, or the coddling ninny.

    Like any other human being, teachers should treat their students with respect while keeping their role in mind. They aren't the parent or therapist. They don't even need to understand why feelings matter, they just need to have respect for those feelings.

    Yelling at a student is the wrong way to go about things. When teachers yell, it shows that they have no control over their emotions, which means that they're not confident with their authority, and which also means they don't think the kid deserves respect.

    Expecting a student to allow someone to yell at them is basically teaching them that they should always submit to their superiors despite any blatant disrespect they're bombarded with.

    Again, teachers aren't disciplinarians. They're teachers. If the teacher can't come up with a way to teach the student why what they did or how they act isn't in anyone's best interests, then just kick them out of class.

    Sadly, I think there's only a minority of people who even think about this shit. (You guys are in the minority, lol.)
    "So I say, live and let live. Thats my motto. Live and let live.
    Anyone who cant go along with that, take him outside and shoot the motherfucker."
    - George Carlin

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