Teaching and Discipline

The other day I read an article by Frieda Amukongo, titled ‘Will a Holistic Approach Help Address the Discipline Issue in Schools?’

As an educator myself, I couldn’t help but agree with what she said.

I mean, gone are the days that pupils actually respect teachers – let alone listen to them.

As much as this doesn’t apply to every school, many are struggling to discipline pupils.

The other day a friend of mine was a substitute teacher for a school at Swakopmund where a Grade 8 pupil walked up to her and said: “Hello my size, jy is darem oulik.”

She said she felt so violated in that moment and was caught off guard and didn’t know what to say.

Back in the day we would have never thought of even speaking to our teachers unless we were asked a question, or at least only work-related things.

These days pupils call teachers by their names and talk to and about them as if they are the same age.

I think one of the biggest issues have to do with how parents talk about teachers in the presence of their children.

How can a teacher be respected if these kids hear their parents talk as if the teachers are useless?

The other day I was caught off-guard, while quietly observing a group of pupils I had in my class.

I paid attention to their behaviour and listened to how they spoke to each other.

It saddened me to hear how mean they were to each other, and I wondered why they’re generation seems so hell-bent on hurting the next person with their words and, or deeds.

Will my future-child also be exposed to behaviour?

If parents only knew how kids talk to each other, they would (hopefully) be as disappointed as I am.

Hopefully when they do, they would decide to address it, so we can try and have a much kinder society.

We are, after all, always reminded of the importance of mental health and have had one too many suicides and attempted suicides by young children.

So, a holistic approach would surely make a difference.

We all need to pull our weight because we know discipline is a necessity for just about anything in life.

It truly does take a village to raise a child, and we need to now (more than ever) take a page from the book of our forefathers’ way of doing things.

Ruthild Ferreira-Onesmus

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