It is for want of application, rather than of means, that men fail to succeed.
THE WEEKEND PUZZLE
Below is a list of 13 (your lucky number) 13 elements. Your mission is to tell me how many of them are phony names and which ones they are. Cheat if you have to, and then live with the shame.
7 guessers so far.
Results will be posted at 9 pm EST Sunday evening.
"There's place and means for every man alive" wrote Shakespeare.
I was speaking with a woman this week who told me that her grandson was diagnosed by his teacher as probably having Attention Deficit Disorder. The boy is in second grade at the local elementary school. His mother knows that it isn't true because when he is home and has a project he applies himself to it with great interest, patience and rigor. The mother explained that to the teacher. The teacher was unimpressed. She just maintained that boy was fidgety and disruptive. When? asked the mother. Whenever a test is given. Does he finish the test? Yes, he finishes it quickly and then after a while he acts up and disturbs the other students. Are the other students still taking the test? Yes. Does my son always finish the test before the others? Yes. Well, then he gets bored. Give him more to do.
So the teacher prepared some material to occupy the boy along with the test. Behold. No more attention deficit.
The boy is obviously brighter than the other students. Why should he have to sit around waiting for them to catch up?
This cookie cutter idea of education, that all students are alike and should be treated that way, especially on the elementary school level, is a waste and an injustice. It goes without saying that there isn't enough money spent on education in this country, or, at least it isn't always spent wisely. And as a result adaptations have to be made. And it's also true that most kids survive and go on the get educated. But is that an excuse for maintaining a system of categorizing children and not being sensitive to their special needs?
I don't consider myself more intelligent than any one else, but I resent to this day some of things I had to suffer during my elementary school years. I was different, not odd, not strange, just different. I didn't fit the mould. I was laughed at by my 4th grade teacher for some of my likes and ideas. I was called ridiculous by my 5th grade teacher because I said I wanted to go to the moon. And I was called a liar in front of the whole class by my 6th grade teacher because I said I liked to watch the UN on TV. I didn't fit into the cookie cutter and there were a few other kids in my class that didn't either. Wounds were made and scars remain.
We must help those who are behind without holding back those who are ahead. Nobody said it was easy. But the means are there, they just have to be applied.
The teacher of the boy mentioned had the means as it turned out, but she took the easy route of categorizing him as deficient. Why? Because he didn't fit in the mould. It's probably not the teacher's fault.
What education means in this country needs to be rethought. The value of a nation is not in money. It's measured in cultural and intellectual worth. A nation, like this one, which produces more lawyers than scientists, is heading in the wrong direction.
It can always be better. There is always something more to do.
As you travel on through life
Whatever be your goal
Keep you eye upon the donut
And not upon the hole.
(Sorry, I couldn't resist that.)