Archive of ‘Mr. Dudley’s posts’ category
Jordan 1? LeBron? Penny’s? Marty McFly’s?Comment below
This is going to be a little too deep of thinking for some, and I even catch myself falling into this mindset on occasion. I do not consider myself a liberal or a conservative; rather a human that makes up my own mind on every situation or issue rather than allowing a label to dictate the position I will choose. Therefore, when I rarely post items like this, I’m not looking to debate or devalue others ideals and values. I generally try to use Facebook, Twitter, Blogs, etc for “good” and occasionally try to post items that makes us think and reflect on ourselves. I will certainly like to hear anyone’s thoughts, but I’m not taking a position on this to declare “for or against”. I just found it to be a thought provoking read that I wanted to share. I think most of us walk a fine line with this stuff…..we tend to think we need to “prepare” our kids to be “tough” and that life overall just isn’t “nice” and/or is a “competition”.
I catch myself on occasion wondering why we don’t make our situation (community/world) better/”nicer” rather than teaching our children to adapt and be “tough/cut throat”. Other times, I catch myself thinking or saying, “how are you going to make it in the real world?” and feeding into the hardening, “toughening up” of our youth. The world might be a little better off if we taught a little more compassion as opposed to “whatever is best for you to get to the top” or insinuating that “grown up” life is never enjoyable. Is there a difference between “being tough”, “learning the hard way”, “rewarded for accomplishment” vs. grit, determination, failure, success….happiness? It is a slippery slope that has evolved over the recent decades with athletics, the workplace, and life in general. So much has changed with regards to self-esteem, even since we were children, and I have no answer if it is better or not. Do we put too much emphasis on the “object” i.e. trophy, ribbon, grade, car, home, etc? The bottom line, in my opinion, is your child needs to know that you care/approve regardless of the “end results”. Whether or not one agrees with the “trophy” or not, they should reflect more on personal reactions and “messages sent” towards your children receiving “second place” or “participation” vs. “the championship”. If children feel comfort with the reaction to these types of scenarios it will, hopefully, eventually produce a feeling of being at peace with themselves later in life, which I am confident will allow them to function just fine as adults. This is all we are after to begin with! Enjoy the article.
The Road Ahead or The Road Behind
by George Joseph Moriarty
Sometimes I think the Fates must
Grin as we denounce and insist
The only reason we can’t win
Is the Fates themselves that miss
Yet there lives on an ancient claim
We win or lose within ourselves
The shining trophies on our shelves
Can never win tomorrow’s game
You and I know deeper down
There’s always a chance to win the crown
But when we fail to give our best
We simply haven’t met the test
Of giving all, and saving none
Until the game is really won
Of showing what is meant by grit
Of fighting on when others quit
Of playing through, not letting up
It’s bearing down that wins the cup
Of taking it and taking more
Until we gain the winning score
Of dreaming there’s a goal ahead
Of hoping when our dreams are dead
Of praying when our hopes have fled
Yet losing, not afraid to fall
If bravely, we have given all
For who can ask more of a man
Than giving all within his span
Giving all, it seems to me
Is not so far from victory
And so the Fates are seldom wrong
No matter how they twist and wind
It is you and I who make our fates
We open up or close the gates
On the road ahead or the road behind.
I have had many things lately that have been “eyeopeners” to the fact that I am progressing into the 2nd half of my career. The gray hairs, hiring former students as teachers, realizing there are only a few people left at YMS that were here before me are all reminders that I am not “the new kid” anymore. However, the thing that really struck a chord with me recently was during our registration. I saw all the bright eyed, anxious, smiling 6th graders. All of them ready for middle school, many nervous about lockers and finding classes, and even more mother’s nervous about their “babies” going off to middle school. All of a sudden it hit me! My son Nolan is a 6th grader!
I can remember back to one of my first years as a classroom teacher, I had a discipline issue with a student that required a phone call home to the parent. As we discussed the issues and behaviors the parent asked me, “Do you have children of your own?” At the time I did not have children. The parent explained to me that when I did I would understand more, etc, etc. I dismissed it and thought the parent to be making excuses for the child, and in a passive-aggressive sort of way undermining my authority. It wasn’t a combative conversation, but for some reason always stayed fresh in my mind.
Now years later, after having children of my own I understand what this parent was meaning. It wasn’t that the parent disagreed with the disciplinary action that I was taking against their child, but they understood that in the grand scheme of things you learn to pick and choose your battles. We have a wide array of teachers in our building who do and do not have children. They are all wonderful teachers and have the best interests of children daily. However, having children, especially a child in middle school, does provide a worldly perspective that has definitely changed the lens through which I view this age group.
Mr. Vest with the aerodynamics, friction, measurement, and more!
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