I recently received an email from a regular subscriber to The Men We Need website in which they shared their experience working with boys in education. Teaching boys is all about learning to enjoy the best in them. Let’s find out more…
I teach-among others, Year 8 boys. I’m the type of teacher who tells them it’s time to become men! They know I mean to stop wearing bangles and earrings-especially as it contravenes school rules! And not to indulge in gossip but to just enjoy each other’s company and play handball or whatever- always allowing everyone to join in, which boys do so well!
I never have a problem with boys; parents often tell me their sons enjoy me as a teacher. Whenever I am asked why this is so, I tend not to provide a reason unless I know the questioner genuinely wants to know.
My answer is threefold:
1. I just enjoy them. ( I laugh at their funny comments which border on smart alec; they are ‘ clever’. If you laugh at them, boys then see that you are on their side and from then on enjoy entertaining you- and pleasing you by working in class.
2. I love them! (This is Christian love I am talking about. I remind myself when they are being far from wonderful that God loves them and probably their mother too; they are someone’s little boy, so I am then able to treat them respectfully.
3. I grew up with lots of brothers and sisters and now have 5 sons so boys are not a foreign entity to me. I see the positives of the male gender but am not willing, either, to accept rudeness or arrogance or laziness.
I teach in a private high school. Of course it is easier-I presume-than in a state high school but there are definitely some ‘tricky’ boys, especially in Year 8 and Year 9. However, if you treat them well in Yr 7 and form a rapport with them, then you will rarely have a problem with them in later years.