I believe in our children
Posted: Friday, September 21, 2012 11:14 am
By: Hyla Richardson, Special to The Press
I believe that every child has the right to develop his capacities to the utmost. If he is brilliant, or on the borderline of imbecility, he has the right to an education that matches his ability and interests. If he leans toward the scientific, business, or other areas, he should be encouraged and allowed access to the materials for those areas.
If a child’s mentality is such that he desires no more than creature comforts, he should be taught to care for himself to the limit of his abilities. I believe the feelings and sensitivities of all children should be considered, for those are present in all, regardless of mental capacities.
I believe every child should have understanding parents who take the time to show love and give encouragement. Parents should let their child know that they are available, if and when, a problem arises and that they will listen. Sometimes a child only needs the opportunity to talk and after talking finds that he, himself, has the problem’s solution, or he finds the problem was not really as big as he thought it to be. Parents’ attitudes will encourage or discourage a child to come or not to come to them. A child needs to feel he can trust his parents to understand.
I believe a child should have understanding teachers who recognize the fact that every child is different and will not fit into a standard mold, but must be allowed to shape his own mold, even as he conforms to the framework of the classroom schedule while developing the skills that are essential to success in any field of endeavor. I believe that every child’s intellectual growth should be measured, not against other children’s abilities and capacities, but against his own. I believe that every child should be able to feel important and wanted. He should be allowed to feel a sense of accomplishment and success. Failure after failure will cause a child to stop trying.
I believe a teacher should have the ability to create in a child the desire to continue to strive, and to do better than he thinks he can. He should be made to feel he has something to add to society. A teacher’s smile and a little interest can establish a special relationship between them and can have a far-reaching effect. A child will respond more positively to a smile and a word of encouragement than he will to the adverse of those.
I believe a teacher should recognize his own abilities and limitations and try to improve himself. He should continue to grow and be aware of the changes in educational developments as they come. I believe the best teachers are those who love people and have the desire to do good through teaching. I believe a teacher rarely fools a child and a genuine feeling of love and understanding will be with that child even after he is no longer a child. These are things that span the years when teacher and “child” happen to meet.
Editor’s note: Hyla Richardson is a retired schoolteacher who makes her home in Dresden.