ERIC Number: EJ848381
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006
Reference Count: 0
When Smart Acts Bad: How Can One Person Make a Difference?
Understanding Our Gifted, v18 n2 p7-8 Win 2006
In this article, the author reflects upon her experiences when she was still a student. She recalls how she questioned why teachers were not accountable when they "crossed the line" (like coming to class late), while students were corrected or punished. She felt powerless. She did not reflect upon her high school educational experience until her first reunion, five years after graduation. She was working successfully as a special education teacher with children she adored. A catalyst for attending the reunion was to see past teachers and to let them know--let them see--that she had actually made something of herself. She was a bit naive in thinking that many teachers attend those events and that they would even care about what became of her. The reunion was just that--a reunion of past students. Other reunions occurred over the years, and her anger and disappointment about her high school experiences intensified. Those high school experiences, hurtful as they were, have provided her with insights that have proven to be invaluable. Counseling or teaching is not just about curriculum, theory, technique, or trends. It is about insight, experiences, empathy and building trusting relationships. The author's emotional survival became dependent upon her resilience in a system-centered school. Outsmarting that system gave her back a sense of control and power, but it did not make up for the emotional and academic isolation from school that she felt. She should have been thriving instead of surviving. So should all students. It is their right.
Descriptors: High School Students, Special Education Teachers, Educational Experience, Empathy, Accountability, Teacher Student Relationship, Persistence, Individual Characteristics, Meetings, Gifted, Counselors, Student Attitudes, Student Behavior, Academic Achievement
Open Space Communications LLC. P.O. Box 18268, Boulder, CO 80308. Tel: 303-444-7020; Tel: 800-494-6178; Fax: 303-545-6505; Web site: http://www.our-gifted.com
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: High Schools; Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A