Posted: Nov 24, 2015 5:18 pm
by Thomas Eshuis
Sendraks wrote:*content warning - comments below are from someone with limited teaching experience and who keeps his contact with children to a minimum.*

I think your approach was the right one, although I hope you explained to the student in question the importance of taking responsibility for their own actions. Someone might have handed the books to him, but he chose to hide them and he has to take responsibility for that as a would-be adult.

Did that, using the analogy of someone giving him stolen goods.

Sendraks wrote:I'm not sure you'd get much by way of a rationale from the children as to the why behind their behaviour. Kids do stupid and thoughtless things without thinking about the consequences or having much empathy for the target of their pranks. I'm not sure how you can teach them empathy either.

The guy who handed back the books said it was all a harmless joke, eventhough the victim was visibly upset, and making it clear he really did not like the situation.
Not to mention I explicitly told them to hand it back.
So even if they did not realise the distress of the victim they should have acknowledged my demand.

Sendraks wrote:It might be worth following up with the victim as to whether they've been harassed further following the lesson, given that kids are wonderful at misplaced aggression and will happily blame the victim for their nearly facing detention, rather than take the culprits to task.

I suggested to their tutor/counsellor that we have two separate talks, one with the victim and one with the culprits. I want the victim to feel safe during my lessons so I need to get an idea of his relation to the rest of the class and how we can improve the situation.
At the same time, it needs to be made clear to the culprits that their behaviour is completely unacceptable, even if they think it's a harmless joke.