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View Full Version : Teacher tells children why they should support Obama



K.Bullock
11-11-2008, 01:16 PM
Of course this makes Swedish TV not American. The teacher in this video tells a girl who's dad is in the military that if McCain is elected her dad will have to stay in Iraq for 100 years.
*warning conservatives(or just people who care about their kids) with high blood pressure should take their meds before viewing this*

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kDEAYgm0Dv8

YardleyLabs
11-11-2008, 02:01 PM
This is a tricky one. I tend to believe it's good to discuss politics in the classroom and to challenge kids not to just to have opinions but to support them. This ultimately helps our children to grow into informed citizens.

It is not OK for a teacher to abuse her position to solicit a specific opinion. I remember during the Bush-Dukakis race when my daughter and one other kid were the only ones in my daughter's class to favor Dukakis. They organized a classroom version of the presidential debate and my daughter and the other Democrat were appointed to play the role of Dukakis. My daughter was intimidated. I said she simply had to work harder to know the issues and be prepared to present them. As it was, Bush won the classroom election (as well as the real one), but a lot more than the original two students ended up voting for Dukakis.

I don't believe that it's realistic or even appropriate for teachers to conceal their own opinions. But they need to challenge both sides fairly. In this example, the teacher clearly should have challenged the boy who said he wanted Obama because he was black. She also should have challenged (constructively) the girl who said she supported McCain because her parents did. It's not that these reasons are completely invalid. However, they are shallow. The teacher stepped over the line when she told the girl that she should oppose McCain because he might keep her father in Iraq forever (I exaggerate).

I suspect that the actual lesson lasted a little longer than what is shown on YouTube. Hopefully it included discussions of issues separating the two candidates. However, the teacher's own statement at the end of the video clearly indicates an inappropriate attitude. I would probably use it is evidence in a disciplinary hearing if I were her principal.

RedHeadedHurricane
11-11-2008, 07:56 PM
This is a tricky one. I tend to believe it's good to discuss politics in the classroom and to challenge kids not to just to have opinions but to support them. This ultimately helps our children to grow into informed citizens.

It is not OK for a teacher to abuse her position to solicit a specific opinion. I remember during the Bush-Dukakis race when my daughter and one other kid were the only ones in my daughter's class to favor Dukakis. They organized a classroom version of the presidential debate and my daughter and the other Democrat were appointed to play the role of Dukakis. My daughter was intimidated. I said she simply had to work harder to know the issues and be prepared to present them. As it was, Bush won the classroom election (as well as the real one), but a lot more than the original two students ended up voting for Dukakis.

I don't believe that it's realistic or even appropriate for teachers to conceal their own opinions. But they need to challenge both sides fairly. In this example, the teacher clearly should have challenged the boy who said he wanted Obama because he was black. She also should have challenged (constructively) the girl who said she supported McCain because her parents did. It's not that these reasons are completely invalid. However, they are shallow. The teacher stepped over the line when she told the girl that she should oppose McCain because he might keep her father in Iraq forever (I exaggerate).

I suspect that the actual lesson lasted a little longer than what is shown on YouTube. Hopefully it included discussions of issues separating the two candidates. However, the teacher's own statement at the end of the video clearly indicates an inappropriate attitude. I would probably use it is evidence in a disciplinary hearing if I were her principal.

Can't you just admit it and say that's a bunch of BULL CRAP and that she should be fired on the spot with the possibility of her license being revoked!

Nothing in the clips needs to be analyzed in the least little bit! Cut and dry - here's your walking papers.

YardleyLabs
11-11-2008, 08:07 PM
Can't you just admit it and say that's a bunch of BULL CRAP and that she should be fired on the spot with the possibility of her license being revoked!

Nothing in the clips needs to be analyzed in the least little bit! Cut and dry - here's your walking papers.

When my daughter was in junior high (a public school), there was an assistant principal who was an evangelical christian who broadcast daily prayers over the PA system. I wanted her fired since she was directly violating a law that I consider to be very important. My daughter pointed out that the same person was very effective in her job and committed to the kids. Her prayers were seen as well meaning even though her beliefs were very different from both my daughter's and my daughter's friends. I did nothing and the principal continued. The teacher was wrong, my daughter was right and, thanks to my daughter, I was also. Education is never cut and dried and hearing and being forced to deal with people of different backgrounds and beliefs is one of school's most important lessons.

Gun_Dog2002
11-11-2008, 08:20 PM
Its wrong. She is clearly biased, sadly she can't even say the person she supports name correctly. On top of that she asked that little girl what changes BO is going to bring. BO can't tell us what changes he's going ot bring, how can that little kid....

/Paul

badbullgator
11-12-2008, 07:04 AM
This is a tricky one. I tend to believe it's good to discuss politics in the classroom and to challenge kids not to just to have opinions but to support them. This ultimately helps our children to grow into informed citizens.

It is not OK for a teacher to abuse her position to solicit a specific opinion. I remember during the Bush-Dukakis race when my daughter and one other kid were the only ones in my daughter's class to favor Dukakis. They organized a classroom version of the presidential debate and my daughter and the other Democrat were appointed to play the role of Dukakis. My daughter was intimidated. I said she simply had to work harder to know the issues and be prepared to present them. As it was, Bush won the classroom election (as well as the real one), but a lot more than the original two students ended up voting for Dukakis.

I don't believe that it's realistic or even appropriate for teachers to conceal their own opinions. But they need to challenge both sides fairly. In this example, the teacher clearly should have challenged the boy who said he wanted Obama because he was black. She also should have challenged (constructively) the girl who said she supported McCain because her parents did. It's not that these reasons are completely invalid. However, they are shallow. The teacher stepped over the line when she told the girl that she should oppose McCain because he might keep her father in Iraq forever (I exaggerate).

I suspect that the actual lesson lasted a little longer than what is shown on YouTube. Hopefully it included discussions of issues separating the two candidates. However, the teacher's own statement at the end of the video clearly indicates an inappropriate attitude. I would probably use it is evidence in a disciplinary hearing if I were her principal.

Nothing tricky about it. She should be teaching HOW government works, but not basically forcing her views on kids. She is not just saying SHE supports BHO, she is trying to FORCE this child to accept her OPINION as fact and using scare tactics as the basis for it. This teacher should be fired!
I donít get it YL, are you saying if you do a good job in one area (and we are not sure in this case that she does), that you can do whatever you want in another? So a cop that has a great record of police work can go home and beat the holey hell out of his wife and kids, but according to your logic it can still be a cop because in that role he is effective? What if this was another topic she was FORCING this child to accept, say homosexuality? Would you have been ok with your daughters teacher preaching that she is bad if she is heterosexual because the teacher was homosexual?

RedHeadedHurricane
11-12-2008, 07:16 AM
Nothing tricky about it. She should be teaching HOW government works, but not basically forcing her views on kids. She is not just saying SHE supports BHO, she is trying to FORCE this child to accept her OPINION as fact and using scare tactics as the basis for it. This teacher should be fired!
I don’t get it YL, are you saying if you do a good job in one area (and we are not sure in this case that she does), that you can do whatever you want in another? So a cop that has a great record of police work can go home and beat the holey hell out of his wife and kids, but according to your logic it can still be a cop because in that role he is effective? What if this was another topic she was FORCING this child to accept, say homosexuality? Would you have been ok with your daughters teacher preaching that she is bad if she is heterosexual because the teacher was homosexual?


Wait a minute gator. Let's try to look at this the other way just to be fair. First we have to logically look at the situation in a way that has nothing to do with the situation. Maybe the cop was a mistreated child who's parents where proned to homosexuality tendancies? Maybe his parents didn't tell little Johnny they loved him enough? Maybe just maybe he was trying to instill a lesson into his wife that she could only learn through physical and mental abuse? Sometimes the lessons we learn in a marriage can somewhere down the road further in life teach us some great life lesson? Hey but you know the change we are gonna change is a great and awesome change! Sheeeezzzzzuuuussss Give me a break!Sorry got off topic.

I agree with you 100%! Totally on spot. Awesome post Badbullgator.

YardleyLabs
11-12-2008, 09:57 AM
Nothing tricky about it. She should be teaching HOW government works, but not basically forcing her views on kids. She is not just saying SHE supports BHO, she is trying to FORCE this child to accept her OPINION as fact and using scare tactics as the basis for it. This teacher should be fired!
I donít get it YL, are you saying if you do a good job in one area (and we are not sure in this case that she does), that you can do whatever you want in another? So a cop that has a great record of police work can go home and beat the holey hell out of his wife and kids, but according to your logic it can still be a cop because in that role he is effective? What if this was another topic she was FORCING this child to accept, say homosexuality? Would you have been ok with your daughters teacher preaching that she is bad if she is heterosexual because the teacher was homosexual?

I think if you read my answer you'll see that I said the teacher should not use her position to push a specific answer but should challenge kids to support their answers especially when there is no thought shown in the answers they give. Thus, she should have challenged both the girl who said she supported McCain because her parents did and the boy who said he supported Obama because he is black. I also said, at the end of my comments, that I would use this film at the teacher's disciplinary hearing.

It's not tricky to make judgments about what is shown in this film (recognizing that we do not know how it may have been edited). What's tricky is teaching kids to think for themselves and to articulate their opinions with confidence. The purpose of school should not be to teach kids to regurgitate opinions, whether the opinions come from their parents, their teacher, their minister, or their government.

I do not like the fact that the teacher took obvious pride from her students' voting mostly for Obama in their mock election. As a teacher, I would take greater pride if my students voted against my own choice because it would evidence stronger wills. When I interview kids who are applying to my alma mater (and even when I am interviewing people for jobs), I deliberately take positions contrary to ones they express to see if they support their own positions, listen to and weigh contrary viewpoints, or try to win favor by changing to support my position. I can live with people who do the first, love people who do the second, and cannot tolerate people who do the third.

I'll save the question on teaching sexual orientation for another day or thread. Suffice it to say, I do not think you can teach anyone to be either heterosexual or homosexual. At best (or worst), you can teach them to be comfortable (or uncomfortable) with what they are.

Marvin S
11-12-2008, 11:13 AM
What's tricky is teaching kids to think for themselves and to articulate their opinions with confidence. The purpose of school should not be to teach kids to regurgitate opinions, whether the opinions come from their parents, their teacher, their minister, or their government.

That was the point of the thread "Make your Point", too much regurgitation & not enough original thought. The children are suffering intellectually for the mantra of Academic Freedom.


When I interview kids who are applying to my alma mater (and even when I am interviewing people for jobs), I deliberately take positions contrary to ones they express to see if they support their own positions, listen to and weigh contrary viewpoints, or try to win favor by changing to support my position. I can live with people who do the first, love people who do the second, and cannot tolerate people who do the third.

I would say one must be a little careful with this approach. Many entry level individuals have learned that the way to achieve goals is "Don't Be Controversial". They know no better as they do not have the background to effectively argue any point. In my days at the big kite factory, there were no smacks working in our group (they were counseled to seek other opportunities within the company) because of the nature of the assignment. An individual who is a kiss up is that way by nature & will hunt for someone to kiss up to.

I was on a School Board in a district where a certain element of teachers performed in the manner described. They had all come during the same time frame & had been hired in a manner that encouraged that conduct & there was a compliant SB in place at the time (All eventually voted from office in bitter campaigns about their performance). There were some very heated arguments between our SB members (we also had a couple of suck up SB members) & administration about these staff members. When the Administration informed us that they were handling staff, they were informed that they gave favorable assignments to the suck up parents. So we were going to draft a district policy that called for the SB to assign the children of staff members. They knew their children would be subjected to these staff members & the dozen of so that were grossly incompetent.

It is amazing how the threat of a policy can clean things up, even when firing a teacher is nigh impossible. The incompetent disappeared in one School Year, the browbeaters were gone completely within 3 years. We all knew who they were.

K.Bullock
11-12-2008, 11:43 AM
This is a tricky one. I tend to believe it's good to discuss politics in the classroom and to challenge kids not to just to have opinions but to support them. This ultimately helps our children to grow into informed citizens.
I agree. My wife was shocked when I agreed to allow our son to work the democrat booth at our county fair with one of his friends. He thought Obama was cool and I could understand that, after hearing Obama Speak I could like him. ...If I did not understand his politics.

Later on he saw that McCain was a veteran and a pilot, he thought that was cool. His granddad was in the Air Force as well, I don't know how much that influenced him. He did not come out of the experience with a sophisticated understanding of the issues, but he does understand the process a little and that is what I wanted him to get.



It is not OK for a teacher to abuse her position to solicit a specific opinion. I remember during the Bush-Dukakis race when my daughter and one other kid were the only ones in my daughter's class to favor Dukakis. They organized a classroom version of the presidential debate and my daughter and the other Democrat were appointed to play the role of Dukakis. My daughter was intimidated. I said she simply had to work harder to know the issues and be prepared to present them. As it was, Bush won the classroom election (as well as the real one), but a lot more than the original two students ended up voting for Dukakis.

I don't believe that it's realistic or even appropriate for teachers to conceal their own opinions. But they need to challenge both sides fairly. In this example, the teacher clearly should have challenged the boy who said he wanted Obama because he was black. She also should have challenged (constructively) the girl who said she supported McCain because her parents did. It's not that these reasons are completely invalid. However, they are shallow. The teacher stepped over the line when she told the girl that she should oppose McCain because he might keep her father in Iraq forever (I exaggerate).
The teacher has been described in other blogs.( Iam trying to find a mainstream news source for this one and strangely cannot) Anyway she has been described as a bully, and that is exactly what I see. She abused her position of authority to demean that little girl for her opinions. If the roles had been reversed it would have been labeled racism and the teacher would have been immediately fired and a national uproar would have ensued. And rightly so.

Not only is this an egregious breech of ethics by an educator, it is another example of a blatant double standard in this society.



I suspect that the actual lesson lasted a little longer than what is shown on YouTube. Hopefully it included discussions of issues separating the two candidates. However, the teacher's own statement at the end of the video clearly indicates an inappropriate attitude. I would probably use it is evidence in a disciplinary hearing if I were her principal.

I suspect so as well. I can only hope it got better.

YardleyLabs
11-12-2008, 11:47 AM
That was the point of the thread "Make your Point", too much regurgitation & not enough original thought. The children are suffering intellectually for the mantra of Academic Freedom.

I would say one must be a little careful with this approach. Many entry level individuals have learned that the way to achieve goals is "Don't Be Controversial". They know no better as they do not have the background to effectively argue any point. In my days at the big kite factory, there were no smacks working in our group (they were counseled to seek other opportunities within the company) because of the nature of the assignment. An indidvidual who is a kiss up is that way by nature & will hunt for someone to kiss up to.
...



Marvin, I agree. I do my best to exclude kiss ups because they poison the environment for everyone. Even experienced managers will sometimes be seduced by sycophants and other employees quickly see this and begin to hide their ideas.

Obviously, no group can remain productive if everyone is simply arguing for sport. However, groups die even faster when everyone simply accepts a prevailing opinion without challenge. Going back to the original thrust of this thread, I believe that teachers should encourage discussion of controversial political and social issues in class. However, they need to do it in a way that encourages kids to form and articulate their individual positions (not the teacher's position or the most popular kid's position) and then helps them learn how to craft proposals for action that require finding ways for members of a group to work together even though they may disagree on some specifics. This type of team work is the foundation for business, governance, and even healthy families.

The teacher in the video did not do this. It would have been appropriate for her to point out to the girl whose father was in the military that McCain had indicated that we could be in Iraq for many, many years. However, this should have been done to foster discussion of the issues, not to attempt to force the girl to convert to the teacher's position. In the same manner, the teacher should have asked the boy who said he preferred Obama because he was black how he would feel if another child opposed Obama because he was black.

K.Bullock
11-12-2008, 11:59 AM
Apparently she is being disciplined.

http://elections.foxnews.com/2008/11/07/north-carolina-teacher-caught-tape-teaching-pro-obama-lessons/




A North Carolina superintendent said Friday that he was "shocked" after viewing video footage of an elementary school teacher harshly questioning a student in class for supporting John McCain.

William Harrison, superintendent of Cumberland County Schools in Fayetteville, has launched an investigation of the teacher, Diatha Harris, and has promised to bring disciplinary action.

ErinsEdge
11-12-2008, 01:40 PM
That was the point of the thread "Make your Point", too much regurgitation & not enough original thought. The children are suffering intellectually for the mantra of Academic Freedom.And also the media and the Internet. Now that students look to the internet for their "facts", will they be able to formulate original opinion, or will it only be regurgitation of what they read on the internet or from biased media?