High school teachers finding refuge in the triple gem?

Theravāda in the 21st century - modern applications of ancient wisdom

High school teachers finding refuge in the triple gem?

Postby Mawkish1983 » Tue Sep 18, 2012 8:40 pm

Hello.

Are there any other high school (ages 11 - 18) teachers that use Dhammawheel? I was wondering what techniques or strategies the Theravada may teach that can help one maintain equanimity when faced with particularly challenging children. The instinct to reprimand when a child endangers those around them can be very strong; is there a skillful way to do this that a belligerent child can not choose to ignore?

Thank you in advance.
Mawkish1983
 
Posts: 1175
Joined: Mon Jan 12, 2009 9:46 am
Location: Essex, UK

Re: High school teachers finding refuge in the triple gem?

Postby Kim OHara » Tue Sep 18, 2012 9:46 pm

Hi, Mawkish,
I have been teaching in both primary and secondary schools for years, so I know what you're talking about. It can be tough, and there are some children and some situations which can't be resolved peacefully and positively. Australian schools, in general, are happy and relaxed compared to what we see and hear about tough schools in the UK and 'normal' schools in the US :jawdrop: but even so, I know of situations where teachers have had to employ considerable physical force, and times when police have been called.
The most difficult situations, in my experience, are created by kids with psychological problems (and, often, learning difficulties): when they are crazy, they are unpredictable and often unreachable.
So, what to do?
Best practice for me is Right Speech, supported by compassion. More generally, maintaining good positive relationships with as many members of the school community as possible (that includes parents as well as colleagues and children) gives you strength and moral support (physical support, too, if it comes to that) in any conflict situation.
Teaching can be challenging but is, in the long run, one of the most rewarding occupations. Stick to it!

All the best,
Kim
User avatar
Kim OHara
 
Posts: 3078
Joined: Wed Dec 09, 2009 5:47 am
Location: North Queensland, Australia

Re: High school teachers finding refuge in the triple gem?

Postby Hanzze » Wed Sep 19, 2012 1:04 am

Mawkish1983 wrote:The instinct to reprimand when a child endangers those around them can be very strong; is there a skillful way to do this that a belligerent child can not choose to ignore?

The classroom door. Sometimes good for the child, sometimes good for one self.
Just that! *smile*
...We Buddhists must find the courage to leave our temples and enter the temples of human experience, temples that are filled with suffering. If we listen to Buddha, Christ, or Gandhi, we can do nothing else. The refugee camps, the prisons, the ghettos, and the battlefields will become our temples. We have so much work to do. ... Peace is Possible! Step by Step. - Samtach Preah Maha Ghosananda "Step by Step" http://www.ghosananda.org/bio_book.html

BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Punna Sutta Nate sante baram sokham _()_
User avatar
Hanzze
 
Posts: 1906
Joined: Mon Oct 04, 2010 12:47 pm
Location: Cambodia

Re: High school teachers finding refuge in the triple gem?

Postby Ben » Wed Sep 19, 2012 1:52 am

Hi Keith,

I work in a private school in Australia; while not in a teaching capacity I do have a lot of contact with students. My wife is an educational psychologist and director of welfare and special education at the same school. She is a closet Buddhist and teaches kids mindfulness meditation as part of her raft of strategies, many of which are derived from MBCT. My wife is often brought in on issues requiring disciplinary action, suspensions and expulsions. With over 1,300 students it doesn't happen that often and when it does, it appears to be a rational process.

I think for a large part you are going to be constrained by the culture within the school. Some years ago I worked for a catholic boys school on the mainland and the staff had all but given up (as a result of an overly soft policy approach to student management) and the students were out out control.
Where I am at the moment I think the balance is about right.
Anyway, I am happy to discuss with you or put you in contact with people over here who can assist you more.
kind regards,

Ben
"One cannot step twice into the same river, nor can one grasp any mortal substance in a stable condition, but it scatters and again gathers; it forms and dissolves, and approaches and departs."

- Heraclitus


Compassionate Hands Foundation (Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • Buddhist Global ReliefUNHCR
Buddhist Life Stories of Australia

e: ben.dhammawheel@gmail.com
User avatar
Ben
Site Admin
 
Posts: 16146
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 12:49 am
Location: Land of the sleeping gods

Re: High school teachers finding refuge in the triple gem?

Postby Hanzze » Wed Sep 19, 2012 2:49 am

This simply depts appopted from the Sigalovada Sutta: are always good to remember:

The duties of the teacher to his (her) pupil

1. To instruct him (her) well in matters concerning social life, customs and manners, as well as in the spiritual field. [--> here included are also duties of pupils]
2. To make sure that he (she) retains well what one teaches by making him repeat several times in the day.
3. To teach everything one knows without concealing anything.
4. To introduce him (her) to one's friends and associates so that he (she) can obtain a job.
5. To guarantee his (her) material and spiritual safety (recitation of protective texts).duties of the pupil to his (her) teacher


And its also good to teach children about their tasks in regard of teachers in general

The duties of the pupil to his (her) teacher

1. To get up in sign of respect and go to receive him (her) when he (she) arrives.
2. To render him (her) a service if necessary.
3. To be eager to listen to his (her) advice.
4. If living with him (her), to help him (her) with the daily chores.
5. To try hard to learn what one does not yet know and not to forget what one has already learnt.


It always becomes complicated if we mix them in a way of "he should...and that's why I should /or did..."
Just that! *smile*
...We Buddhists must find the courage to leave our temples and enter the temples of human experience, temples that are filled with suffering. If we listen to Buddha, Christ, or Gandhi, we can do nothing else. The refugee camps, the prisons, the ghettos, and the battlefields will become our temples. We have so much work to do. ... Peace is Possible! Step by Step. - Samtach Preah Maha Ghosananda "Step by Step" http://www.ghosananda.org/bio_book.html

BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Punna Sutta Nate sante baram sokham _()_
User avatar
Hanzze
 
Posts: 1906
Joined: Mon Oct 04, 2010 12:47 pm
Location: Cambodia

High school teachers finding refuge in the triple gem?

Postby GraemeR » Thu Sep 20, 2012 8:54 am

Mawkish1983 wrote:Hello.

Are there any other high school (ages 11 - 18) teachers that use Dhammawheel? I was wondering what techniques or strategies the Theravada may teach that can help one maintain equanimity when faced with particularly challenging children. The instinct to reprimand when a child endangers those around them can be very strong; is there a skillful way to do this that a belligerent child can not choose to ignore?

Thank you in advance.


Hi

I teach this age group. It is necessary to correct aggressive behaviour and punish it within the school structure. Rules should be clear as should the implications of breaking them. I think however the most important technique is to set a good example to students based on practice of Dharmma. We should try and get students to generate mutual respect, use appropriate language and behaviour by generating the correct atmosphere in the classroom.

Terms finishes soon, back to exams ....... good luck :)

Graham
User avatar
GraemeR
 
Posts: 136
Joined: Mon Jan 30, 2012 9:20 am
Location: Thailand

Re: High school teachers finding refuge in the triple gem?

Postby Hanzze » Thu Sep 20, 2012 9:03 am

A Mold

You schoolteachers are a mold for forming people, so you should turn toward the direction of the Dhamma and practice the Dhamma. Behave yourselves in a way that can be an example for others. You're like a mold for making Buddha amulets. Have you ever seen one? Just a single mold: They carve it well, carving the face, the eyebrows, the chin so that they aren't crooked or missing anything, so that the Buddha amulets they stamp out of it will come out beautiful. And when they come out they really are beautiful because of that one good mold.

It's the same with schoolteachers, who are molds for their students and for people at large. You have to make yourselves beautiful in terms of the personal qualities of a good teacher. You always have to behave in line with your ethical discipline and the pattern of a leader and guide. Abandon all forms of intoxication and unskillful behavior. Try to restore high standards of morality. You have to be a good example to the children.

Vines

Children are like vines. Wherever a vine sprouts up, it has to look for a tree to climb up. If one tree is 15 centimeters away and another 10 meters away, which tree do you think the vine will climb up? It'll climb up the nearest tree. It's probably not going to climb up the tree 10 meters away because that one is too far off.

In the same way, schoolteachers are the people closest to their students. They're the people who children are most likely to take as examples. So it's essential that you schoolteachers have good manners and standards of behavior — in terms of what you should do and should abandon — for children to see. Don't teach them just with your mouths. The way you stand, the way you walk, the way you sit — your every movement, your every word — you have to make into a teaching for the children. They'll follow your example because children are quick to pick things up. They're quicker than adults.
Just that! *smile*
...We Buddhists must find the courage to leave our temples and enter the temples of human experience, temples that are filled with suffering. If we listen to Buddha, Christ, or Gandhi, we can do nothing else. The refugee camps, the prisons, the ghettos, and the battlefields will become our temples. We have so much work to do. ... Peace is Possible! Step by Step. - Samtach Preah Maha Ghosananda "Step by Step" http://www.ghosananda.org/bio_book.html

BUT! it is important to become a real Buddhist first. Like Punna did: Punna Sutta Nate sante baram sokham _()_
User avatar
Hanzze
 
Posts: 1906
Joined: Mon Oct 04, 2010 12:47 pm
Location: Cambodia

Re: High school teachers finding refuge in the triple gem?

Postby Mawkish1983 » Fri Sep 21, 2012 4:30 am

Thank you all for your advice. I may even put the paraphrased Sigalovada Sutta on my wall.
Mawkish1983
 
Posts: 1175
Joined: Mon Jan 12, 2009 9:46 am
Location: Essex, UK

Nice

Postby steward15 » Tue Oct 02, 2012 11:40 am

It's the same with schoolteachers, who are molds for their students and for people at large. You have to make yourselves beautiful in terms of the personal qualities of a good teacher. You always have to behave in line with your ethical discipline and the pattern of a leader and guide. Abandon all forms of intoxication and unskillful behavior. Try to restore high standards of morality. You have to be a good example to the children.
steward15
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Oct 02, 2012 11:27 am


Return to Theravāda for the modern world

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests