I once joked with Scott James about making the team clean the gymnasium to teach them something. At some points I’ve actually wanted to be serious about it but yet I know once again this summer the parents & boosters will be left to get ready for the three day summer shootout.
Yet, what if our society actually had not degraded to where someone is paid to clean. Well, one thing is I would not have this job. Is this me complaing? Not at all, I enjoy the community but sometimes I really do get sick & tired of how much stuff gets dragged into the building by everyone. I do it as attempt to better myself to move on past being a custodian. Here is an excerpt from an email my mother sent me from Japan in which she visited a middle school with my brother. You may find it interesting.
“Yesterday was a very busy day. I went with Ryan to his Junior High. They call it a Middle School but it has grades 7, 8, and 9. I was asked to introduce myself to the students in the three classes that Ryan had yesterday. Those of you who are teachers will not believe the following:”
“Each classroom has two teachers. The teachers change rooms the students stay in the same classroom. There are 10 minutes between each period. At no time did I see a student ask to be excused during the period. At no time did I see any students outside of the classroom during the instructional periods.l I am making the assumption that students use the bathrooms during the 10 minutes and anything else that is needed. There is no disruption of the instructional time. In two of the classes tests were given. The students moved their desks apart while taking the test and then moved them back next to each other afterwards. Of course, they were very quiet and respectful while I was making my introductions. The teacher then quizzed them about certain things I had said in my introduction. Students are assigned duties within the instructional day. Some clean the board after each class, some carry their instructions textbooks back to the teacher prep area and I don’t know what else is assigned. Students even come and get their instructors texts from the prep area in the morning before the instructors go to the classrooms. I was particularly interested in watching the students clear the blackboards. Yes blackboard with chalk. They meticulously go down the board until the entire board is cleaned. It appears that two students are assigned this duty. There is even a small vacuum in the room to clean the erasers. No beating the erasers on the side of the buildings or the sidewalks to get rid of the dust. If students erased any and there were erasers crumbs on the desk, it was after the instructional period that those little piles were scooped into their hands and placed in a wastebasket. No one moved from their desk areas during the instructional time.”
“After class, I ate with the students. Are you ready for this one??? The students served the lunch and cleaned up after the lunch. Each student is responsible for bringing their own chopsticks. They eat at tables with plastic table cloths on them and there are no napkins. Students bring their own towels which are rinsed out and hung on drying racks in the kitchen. After everyone is served, seconds are offered. Any food not eaten is placed back in the containers where it was served. I didn’t have the guts to ask if the food was offered again or what happened to the food. I was afraid of the answer. Once the dining area has been cleaned, then ALL the staff and students go to sinks in the hallway and brush their teeth. Yes brush their teeth. Each student has a cup with his toothbrush and toothpaste in it.”
“It was just so strange to see all these students standing at the sinks brushing their teeth. Wonder what would happen if we tried this in America or had students actually clean the cafeteria areas? Corporal punishment? Teachers may also hit the kids and nothing is said.”
“After lunch, the students have a 20 minutes of exercise/study time. There is a library but there is no librarian. Students go in and get the materials that are needed. No check out and once finished the students return them. Students were everywhere in the building without any supervision. Some were playing basketball, so were rough housing in the classrooms, and some were just in groups talking. It was so strange to see them without any instructors near by and no issues. Ryan said he has never seen an issues. Two guys were arm wrestling in the classroom before the instruction started and teacher didn’t appear that she even noticed the behavior.”
What if western civilization hadn’t degraded in the last 100 years? Where would we be?