Saturday, 24 April 2010

Classrooms: Survival of the Fittest, 2.

Despite efforts to prevent bullying, to help all children keep up with the others, our biological selves can be pulling in the opposite direction. A classic example of this would be our desire to eradicate bullying, not insincere, of course, yet we struggle to prevent it at the same time as we use default strategies to enable it. Sounds strange, I know, but throughout society we do this. We endorse systems that create victims and punish our vulnerable, whilst trumpeting equal rights or humane treatment or protection for victims.
In the case of classroom teaching, all teachers know that a percentage of kids are falling off the pace in class. What happens is that they can`t help them catch up so they attend to the conforming majority and leave the runts behind. The word "runt" here shows us exactly what is happening: just as a weak animal will be abandoned in nature, maybe the runt will be unable to fight for it`s mothers milk, so this same natural selection process happens in class.

I call this a runting process. It`s a harsh and uncomfortable term, but one I want to use because it shines a wake-up light on the biological forces that are so destructive in our societies. The classroom, in general terms, is a classic runting process. The teacher likes the stronger kids, the ones who cooperate and make his life easy. He doesn` t like the less able ones who hold everyone back and disrupt things....even the imaginative,free-thinking, challenging child is often not wanted.
What happens, of course, in this runting process, is that the adaptable, let`s call them "conjunct" children, do better and better and the ones who have difficulty become more and more disjunct. The tragedy of this is for all to see: the kids who fall by the wayside, become more and more disabled as they fall, less and less "deserving" help and less receptive too. They are like our social misfits, tramps, alcoholics, beyond help, disillusioned and hopeless. Probably by this time too, the process has made them hate learning and hate themselves. ......Okay, so let`s just remember here that this didn`t just happen, no less so than a tsunami is a spontaneous act of God !!! It has been CREATED, just like the witch hunts that we were discussing in my previous blog, disaffected children are CREATED by us. The classroom does this to kids. (N.B. I intend to look at illness in regard to the need to runt people in our society, including A.D.H.D., at a later date.)

Isn`t this a terrible thing, you might say? Well, of course it is. The way we strive and thrive against others can have terrible consequences, but I think that if we can be aware of what we do,understanding might help us to make things better.

I want to just go back to bullying in schools before I leave this blog for today...We talked about "evidence" for the case of our cosmetic good intentions versus our underlying biological drives... I have just said that the level of failed children in our education system demonstrates how we profess to want education for all, yet use a system that we know will create failure on a large scale for some. This is a sign of contrary intentions and our mainstream blindness to it shows how we allow our other nature to override our intelligence, I think. So, let`s just look at the way we strive to deal with bullying and see whether there is a confusion of intention here too:

For many children who are bullied in school, there is not the "expected" outcome. The school doesn`t deal with the bullies, doesn`t uphold the bullied child, whilst on the surface they proclaim that they have a "robust anti-bullying policy" or that "no child is bullied in our school." Yet many parents pull their children out of school because of unresolved bullying. Curious! Many G.Ps will not support parents in protecting their child because they do not want to go against the school or the L.E.A., and there is often an outcome that sees the child having to have counselling or even medication to "treat" the psychological damage caused by bullying. So here is an example of how we think that we are on one side, yet are really on the other. Schools, despite a cosmetic stance against bullying, will often be more at ease with an outcome that sees a bullied child having to have counselling or take medication, rather than dealing with bullies. This is a "make the victim mad" strategy seen in the game-play of groups.

Why does this happen?

I am on the back-boiler until my next blog! Please tune in for the sequel !!!!!! Very Best Wishes to all !!!!

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