Guest Author - Terrie Lynn Bittner
We send our children off to school with admonitions to obey their teachers and to learn whatís taught. So what happens when your children are asked to do something that violates gospel principles or are taught something we know isnít true?
Children are easily confused if they are simply told to obey their teachers without being given guidelines for doing so. Family Home Evening is a good time to practice coping with contradictions. Create situations where a child is asked to violate a gospel principle and have them first discuss their options and then role-play the situation. The more often they practice, the easier it will be for them to carry out what youíve taught them. Donít wait until the situation arisesóprepare them in advance.
Explain to them that most teachers care about their students and want the best for them. However, teachers donít always believe as we do, and sometimes we run into some challenges. There isnít just one right way to handle each situation. Decide with your children how each situation should be handled and tell them how to politely request permission to call you if they arenít sure what to do and explain what to do if permission is denied.
Following are some sample challenges to rehearse:
Itís Friday, which is movie day at school. Your teacher shows a movie you arenít allowed to see. What are you going to do? What will you do if you arenít sure if youíre allowed to see it? What will you do if youíre watching the movie and suddenly something inappropriate happens onscreen?
Your class is learning about Japan and the teacher announces you are going to learn about the tea ceremony. She serves tea, which you arenít allowed to drink. What will you do? What will you do if a friend brings a drink to a classroom party that you canít have?
Your teacher announces that there is a special practice for your sports team or drama class on Sunday and attendance is mandatory. What will you do?
Your teacher is telling the class about the pioneers. Some things she says about the church arenít true. What you are going to do?
Your health class is discussing families. You are uncomfortable with some of the teachings. What will you do?