What’s up with the idea of detention?
If anyone else reading has ever had detention, during our K – 12 grade education, tell me about it below: how you earned it, what the circumstances were, if you felt it was justified or wrong….
My neighborhood houses two schools within two blocks of my HQ: an elementary school and a middle school.
On a walk one day, I saw this bright piece of paper on the street, picked it up and something about it struck me: why would we believe detention is a good idea?
More accurately, who ever thought the idea of detaining students a wise one and to what end?
As a former middle school teacher and as a professional in my own business, I know that negative motivation is in fact a really bad idea.
Don’t punish. Inspire.
The example and modeled behavior of seemingly professional educators is not even close to being the best here; far from it. Habit and pattern, convention and swallowing whole this idea is in fact anti-educational.
Instead of assigning this kid detention, the singular opportunity to talk about what’s going on, why and options was at hand. Why wasn’t that the first choice?
If you feel inclined to preach to me or anyone that, ” You don’t know the circumstances,” don’t. Yes, you’re right I don’t. That’s irrelevant. What I do know is that unequivocally there are much better, smarter choices. Choices that can fit and connect with everyone. Period.
How about campus pick up or community service, school service, cafeteria cleaning OR how about this: how about one on one time with an adult who can help a student talk, engage and figure out a better way forward?
Radical idea, right??!!
Often seemingly disruptive behavior is a sign someone needs and wants help. So offer some damn help instead of assigning detention.
Detention for students is a stupid idea. To single out and isolate someone for their behavior is archaic and a waste of precious time. There are much better options, readily at hand.
Chronological adults of the world, teachers included: rethink this silly and worthless practice. Instead, engage in the true education of conversation. Find solutions rather than mindless and backwards habits. Ask questions, really listen, ponder, discuss. Solutioning requires us to tune in – to connect – with other people of all ages and in all circumstances.
Make the efforts you put forth worthwhile to everyone, not a detriment or negative.