I remember growing up and having classroom discussions about moral dilemmas. What would I do if I found a wallet full of money? What would I do if…? These were great discussions and my teacher gently guided us into thinking about what is the right thing to do.
In today’s society, I feel it is important to have more of these kinds of discussions in the classroom. Maybe it is called character education or some official name but whatever we call it, it is time to start these conversations. I think it would make a great Voicethread where a picture could be shown of the dilemma, and have each student respond about what the right thing to do would be. Students could write a skit and role play how they would do the right thing. At first, students will shout out or say what they would do which could be inappropriate so it would be important that you only want to discuss what the right thing to do would be. In order to do this, have them imagine them as the person with the problem. How would they want someone to act then? This puts a different light onto if they are the one who lost the wallet or needs help. My parents would always say that I would see things differently if I walked in someone else’s shoes and I try to do that when I’m faced with a difficult situation.
We practice fire drills and tornado drills so why not practice this kind of behavior? If we don’t model the behavior or practice it, how will students know how to do the right thing? I don’t think the softball players learned this behavior suddenly at that moment. I believe that someone modeled this behavior over the years. It took guts to do the right thing even if it meant that they would lose the game. They didn’t have to do this and could have let the umpire and coach resolve the situation but they saw a solution and acted on it. It doesn’t seem like they went to their own coach to ask his permission or discussed it as a team and it wasn’t debated because they knew this was the right thing to do.
As I see all these movies and TV shows that influence young people about violence, profanity, and disrespect, I feel we should use examples like this to influence them in a positive way. I see these softball players as true heroes. I wonder how many other heroes do we have in our classrooms.