Quote from Desmond Tutu.
As I read this quote I couldn’t believe the depth of truth in so few words.
When I began working in a school I had the opportunity to work with a experienced teacher called Violet. She was originally from Ghana and she controlled the class with consistency and a whispered voice. To see her teach was an honour. The loudest and most brutal child from London was putty in her hands. To hear her they had to listen carefully. Plus, as I quickly realised – she was always right. She didn’t need to raise her voice, there was an inner calmness and it was magical to watch.
In our home voices aren’t usually raised (unless I’m singing) we tend to bicker it out, not that I’m sure this is any better? However, in the classroom I only tend to raise my voice to give instructions, particularly when the students are absorbed in the previous activity.
This quote is going to find its way on to my classroom wall. As I work in an all girls school they can be LOUD. Teenagers are often full of opinions and willing to express their distaste should anyone disagree. It makes sense that we are at our most vocal during our teen years, as we find our way through societies behaviour patterns, rebel and with a little magic come out unscathed in our mid twenties.
As I age (like a fine wine) I have become quieter (but in no way quiet) the hot air of my twenties is behind me. I cringe at some of the arguments I’ve had in the past and can see that with age comes a better understanding of ourselves and as Desmond suggested – an improvement in argument.
This week I’m going to consciously listen to arguments and how loud the voice of the weaker disputer is.