Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Sometimes teachers make mistakes

Last Sunday I went to watch my 6-year-old son taking part in football match.There were 8 teams altogether.My son was the striker.As I watched him and his team mates playing,I realised how sometimes we,parents always look down on our children.They could play really well.
However during the second match,some of these kindergarten children began to feel bored(perhaps because of the heat)One of them even told his mum he was not going to play the next match because he did not get the ball. Then,as I was videotaping the game,I could not help but noticed one of the boys ran to his mum and cried when he could not tackle the ball from the other boys(even though they were his team mates. He shouldn't tackle the ball but waited for his team mate to pass the ball to him. Yet,what does a 6-year-old boy know about the importance of teamwork!(He may have not yet celebrated his 6th birthday)Their teacher,Mrs Kay(not a real name)was very supportive even though the children failed to win the second and third matches.She was stressing that they should just enjoy playing the game and give it their best try. I am proud of her!I am grateful that she is my son's teacher!
On contrary, a very excited teacher from another team seemed to have forgotten that winning is not the main goal in sports.Our children can learn tolerance, to give and take,to be patient, to work together and so many other positive values that they may not be able to learn in formal classroom.Instead of giving encouragement,she took out one of the boys in her team from playing the third match against my son's team and cruelly said in front of many eyes

"You cannot play in this game.You don't know how to play.You did nothing just now!".

I was shocked to hear it.If my son was in her team,he might have got the same treatment.A 6-year-old child is just beginning to know the world around him. Playing a game like football is one of the mediums of getting him to get ready to face the challenges ahead of him.Harsh words at an early age will always follow him like a shadow in his growing up life.I remember a sixteen years old girl that I taught many years back lamented to me how she hated English because her year one English teacher punished her for not able to pronounce English word correctly.

Well,teachers sometimes we have to admit that we do make mistakes.That's why we need from time to time to reflect on what we have done or said every day.Have I hurt someone's feeling today, with my words or action?Gee....what must I do now?Should I ask for forgiveness from the concerned person?From a six-year-old boy?We should!As humans,we do err.