Holding Kids Accountable Rush

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Peregrin5, May 24, 2016.

  1. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    I really think there are 2 different versions of respect. One seems to be conforming to social norms of authority the other is a deeply personal feeling toward another person.

    Respect does need to be earned. I understand the idea of respecting the position, but that is VERY different from respecting the person. I will say A2Z you cleared up where peoples ideas of respect in the classroom are coming from.
     
  2. a2z

    a2z Maven

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    May 26, 2016

    We will just not see eye to eye on this one. That is ok.
    I think everyone deserves to be respected until such time they demonstrate or I find they are worthy of that respect. Otherwise, at what point does someone earn respect? Is the fact that a student set foot in the classroom enough to earn the respect of the teacher? Or does the student need to demonstrate exceptional kindness to someone in order to gain the respect of the teacher?

    Maybe we are working from a different idea of what respect means since it really is a word such as love which everyone has their own meaning of what it really means.
     
  3. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    May 26, 2016

    IMO it does. Students are not likely to respect you as a person if they do not respect you as a teacher.

    A large part of the personal respect that students provide teachers is due to their ability to make the classroom a safe and fun place for them to learn. I agree with you that there are many different forms of respect including respect for the position and personal respect (though I think even personal respect can be divided into deep personal respect, and simply respecting a person's autonomy as a person [i.e. giving them space, speaking to them politely, etc.]). I also agree that in the past, a teacher could get respect simply through their position without taking action. This is not the case now, as described by a2z.

    I have many students who respect me both personally and my position. And I have students who respect my position, but don't particularly like me. I have zero students who respect me as a person but do not respect me as a teacher, and that's not through any personal faults of my own. It simply doesn't work that way with kids. Teachers who are weak in leading their class and upholding respect for their position are unlikeable.

    When I held those students accountable, it showed that I cared. Very few adults in their life care. And I care more about than just addressing me with respect. I showed that I cared about the fact that they address all teachers with respect. I also showed that I cared enough to teach them the appropriate way to behave. As a result, yesterday, these students who I had never met before ended up leaving my lunch detention with a sincere apology, a handshake, and a smile. That was personal respect, which again can only come from first respecting the position of a teacher. (Of course if they left grumbling, but didn't do the behavior again, that's just respecting the position and not the person, but hey at least the behavior stops.) If I don't take actions to ensure that they respect my position as a teacher, then it shows that I don't respect myself and my role. And if I don't respect my own role, why should they?
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2016
  4. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    May 26, 2016

    Yep, I think this is what it is. Like Peregrin said, and I agree, there is respecting someone's personal space, respecting the position...etc. I am talking about a different level of respect, that for me personally, can only be earned through actions and interactions over time.
     
  5. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    May 26, 2016

    I agree with you about different levels of personal respect...respecting one's space, as an individual..etc.

    I disagree with this sentence. Actions and interactions will rule the day and change initial feelings towards another person.

    Edit: and by "respect you as a teacher" you mean, the job title.
     
  6. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    May 26, 2016

    When it comes to teacher names, I have the minor disadvantage of having my usual first contact with students comes as an email with my first and last name. Some students take that as a license to call me by my first name. Usually, I am able to simply explain that I prefer to be called Mrs. Fiddle by anyone who is still in my high school. Once they have walked across the stage at graduation, they will have earned the right to call me Cat. If a student slips, I quietly remind them they still have more work to do before they've earned First Name Privileges.

    Funny thing is that I'm now FB friends with several graduates and have met up for lunch with them. Only two feel comfortable using my first name.
     
  7. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    YES!!!!!!!! In my experience this shows RESPECT. The fact that they can call you by your first name and choose to call you by Mr. or Mrs., imo, shows that they respect you on a deeper level. They are not uncomfortable or calling you Mr. or Mrs. as a social norm, it is much deeper than that.
     
  8. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    May 26, 2016

    Yes but the reason that they show her that respect is because she requested it to begin with. If she didn't or didn't uphold that expectation of respect towards her position while they were her students, it is unlikely that they would continue referring to her as "Mrs." if they ever did in the first place.

    Note that no one is saying that respect at a deeper level doesn't exist, it's just that it needs to be built. And one of the ways I believe it is built is by expecting basic respect towards your role as a teacher first, and then from that starting point engaging in those interactions that you mention. In my view respecting the role of the teacher is the foundation upon which deeper respect can be built. Without that foundation, it's difficult if not impossible to build respectful relationships with students.
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2016
  9. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    This is where we disagree. I believe true respect is only built, starting point is irrelevant. One can start with respect and quickly lose it, one can start with no respect and develop immense respect. For me it doesn't start with a title, Cat's example is just evidence of a deeper respect that was built, it is not because of the title or a result of the title, it was the journey.

    I agree the students would likely not have ended up calling her Mrs. if they started with a first name, this is evidence of a deeper/authentic respect, not the result of starting with the title.(if that makes sense)

    I have nothing against expecting students to refer to you by the title(respect for the title), that is just not the respect I am looking for. I want them to respect me for my actions and this is 100% separate from a title.

    I understand that for you it is impossible to get respect unless they respond to you by the title, this is simply not the case for me.
     
  10. a2z

    a2z Maven

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    Respect for the title (or authority) is often the basis for initial civil behavior and (hate to say it) compliance. These things are driven by fear or respect for the title. Respect for the title is now gone. That is why I believe civility in society has slipped so far and initial behavior has slipped so far.
     
  11. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Regardless of if they use a title with you, you still expect them to treat you with respect because of your position as a teacher. You can tell students to use your first name but still generate respect because you have delineated what it means to respect a teacher. It's not about the title. The title is just one way to teach students how to respect your position as a teacher and it also just teaches good manners. What does matter is the position or the role. I understand you and I may continue to disagree, but I simply haven't ever seen evidence of a well run classroom where the students think of the teacher as their peer, and the teacher doesn't set any rules for respect beforehand. Perhaps your classroom is this way. I don't know, I've never seen it work that way in reality.
     
  12. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    Yep, fear and/or compliance.
     
  13. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    You mean compliance, not respect...at least not the type of respect I am talking about. You cannot make rules and enforce your way to respect.
     
  14. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    May 26, 2016

    Possibly. For instance I expect my students to be compliant to the rules that they need to respect other people, property, and learning at all times. In the case of other students, that means keeping your hands to yourself, speaking politely, not disrupting them while they are working, and asking to borrow instead of taking. In the case of the teacher that means addressing me respectfully, holding conversation until an appropriate time, and not arguing or talking back.

    Does this make me a mean dictator who expects compliance? Maybe. But at least my classroom is safe, and I build many productive relationships with my students and they can build productive relationships with each other, that do include deep levels of respect. Again, maybe you do something differently, but I believe I achieve the same result you're talking about where students hold deep respect for me, for years to come as evidenced by how many come back to visit from High School and tell me my class was their favorite class ever, and how they miss it. It works for me. What works for you might be different.
     
  15. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    I think all teachers expect compliance Peregrin, I just choose to see a difference between compliance and respect.

    We can agree to disagree.
     
  16. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Definitely. I just want to make it clear that I don't disagree with you that there is a difference between compliance and respect. I think where we disagree is that I believe that compliance often leads to respect when you interact and engage with students from that initial foundation.
     
  17. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    Yes, I agree that is the difference. My take is it MAY lead to respect, it is dependent on the interactions over time.
     
  18. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Pashtun was right. Their first introduction to me was an email from Cat Fiddle. The majority of students referred to me immediately as either Ms. or Mrs. Fiddle (I prefer the latter because it has a good trochaic rhythm). The few who called me Cat were quickly told that wasn't a school-friendly move, and they never called me that again... except for the two who have chosen otherwise.

    As an aside on that, the two who now call me by my first name are both out of college and into their own careers. They have earned the world experience to be my peers and my friends.
     
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  19. applecore

    applecore Devotee

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    May 28, 2016

    I get what you're saying.

    I was raised in the society/generation of calling people by their last names and showing respect to others also by using "ma'am" and "sir". I guess that's why I like the fact that teaching is a profession that we are still called by our last names. :)
     
  20. EdEd

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    Wow, such a great discussion! Really amazing points from different perspectives. a2z really appreciate your comments on the historical societal changes in terms of respect, and Pashtun I think very interesting points about different kinds of respect.

    I often talk with students about respect vs. deference vs. fear. All are frequently confused in my experience, and apply not only in the adult/child domain but in kids' peer relationships as well.

    The differences are fairly clear - respect is that "deeply personal feeling" that pashtun referred to. Deference is simply acknowledging the position one has and the right that person has to do something, say something, demand something, be something. Fear also motivates compliance, but not from the perspective of respect or even deference to one's position, but fear of what will happen if that person's directive is not followed. That kind of "community respect" - the kind that someone has for an elder or someone that hasn't been met - is probably deference, but perhaps somewhere in between deference and respect.

    In the context of peer relationships, I often try to talk with kids with bully-type behaviors about this difference, and get them to see that just because other kids are afraid of them does not mean that other kids like or respect them. I often explain that, over time, those kids lose the element of fear they currently possess, and often become the least popular.

    In the context of this conversation, and with these working definitions, I'd say that you both are right - a2z, I do believe we've lost that baseline level of general respect/deference we offer to individuals simply because they are human beings, or selectively to people based on position or class. However, that "deeply personal sentiment" that pashtun speaks of - a deep sense of value one finds for someone else - is not really something that could just be arbitrarily given. It's like love - you don't just randomly love folks in your community, in the deep sense of the word "love."

    As a side note, I don't believe all societal changes have been bad - we used to give deference/respect to certain people, and not others, categorically - even when not deserved. Men would get more "respect" than women, White folks more than Black, and so on. I certainly lament certain elements of "question everything" as you do a2z, but some things have led to positive changes. Unfortunately, my perspective is that a lot of less desirable changes have come along too.

    This is when I think it would be helpful if we spoke an ancient language like Hebrew or Greek - those languages often have words with multiple layers and meanings based on context, more so than English from what I'm told. There's a less literal or prescriptive sense of words when using certain types of language. Our concept of "respect" I believe could benefit from such treatment here. We're all speaking of different elements and contexts of the concept, and perhaps even of different concepts (yet related) altogether.
     
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