Like Father Like Son
Ah… Teenage boys, the age after they discover cussing. The age when they realize that it is cool cussing. It is also the age whereby they would cuss in front of their teacher, if they are comfortable with them. I suppose that would be my student. As Ken managed to squeeze three F-words in a short 8 word sentence. I reprimanded him for his actions. It was at this point that I realized the wisdom behind the term, ‘like father, like son’.
Ken was not happy being reprimanded. To him, his reason for cussing consists of only one. My father does it, so I don’t see why can’t I. Ken looks up to his father who is the main provider of the family. His father’s behavior of course is deemed unacceptable by his mother. However, despite multiple nudges by his mother, Ken’s dad insists that a little cussing can hurt no one.
I of course did not accept this reason and he was punished for that. I warned that any repeat offence would mean a nice chat with his parents. If he were to repeat it after the parents meet, I would divulge an embarrassing statement that he made about a certain part of your body that develops when a boy hits puberty to his parents. Of course, I mean that in jest….or do I?
The Crucial Role Of a Teacher In This
I think at the end of the day, parents play an important role in shaping a child. The thing is, we are not perfect. I am no saint as a parent either and I do mess up from time to time. That is why I hope and rely on my children’s teacher to help me right any bad habits that I may have done.
A teacher in this case acts as a second layer in the defense against a child’s learning of bad habits. At times, certain behavior such as cussing are deemed normal by some individuals. This indirectly tells the child that it is fine to do so. Ironically, some parents punish the child for cussing but yet do so themselves. This unfortunately does the child no favors and in the long run, may cause the child to rebel. As such, teachers do play an important role in shaping a child in tandem with the parents.
This all can be mitigated as well if the teacher has certain flaws of their own. I remember one of my daughter’s teachers would speak with a strong Chinese accent filled with fillers. Basically, ‘Can you please sit down?’ would become ‘Haiya, You ah, can you please sit down lahhh?’ Note that if you are Malaysian, you will understand how this sounds and it does affect the way a child speaks especially if they hold the teacher in a high regard.
That being said, we all make mistakes and because of that, collaboration, dialogue and communication between parents and teachers are important. After all, we are all in this together and most of the time, both the teacher and parent want the same thing. That is to see the child succeed and develop into an awesome and well mannered human being.