‘Students are lazy’

‘Students have no commitment or dedication to their subject’
‘Students do not respect teachers’

What every teacher faces today is this ubiquitous issue with an obvious pathology and a conceivable solution. The reasons lie with the unfortunate evolutionary changes in the parenting behavior, our socioeconomic spectrum, and the value of morals.

Parenting is the prime culprit here, for we want to provide our kids with ‘everything’ under the sky, being utopian parents who will never say a ‘no’ to our loved ones. This unconditional pampering extends to their education in nefarious ways wherein the kid never realizes the value of his/her education because it’s a ‘given’ from his/her parents. If everything is easy in life, if everything is provided before you need it, and if everything is available without breaking a sweat, how can we expect the kids to show any element of sincerity or dedication in their studies?

The buck does not stop there. Gone are the days when teachers called up parents to complain about failing grades; these days, parents side with their kids and vociferously defend them. Parents complain to teachers of burdening their kids with too much of academics. Besides, our kids grow up in an environment where honesty, sincerity, dedication, and being truthful are considered detrimental to their ride towards the big rewards of life. ‘Just reach wherever you want, through whatever means you can’ seems the central dogma of existence.

So it’s no surprise… That the kids of today are hardly bothered about their education, degree, teachers, or anything per se except clear the exams on time, somehow through some means… We hear of manipulative, lying, and aggressive behavior among the students… They tend to be lazy, non-focussed, and irregular in attending classes…

Having played the blame game, we have the moral obligation to cure the disease.

  1. Accept the fact that we are teaching a bunch of pampered kids
  2. Using crude aggression to break them might be counter productive
  3. Stress on the importance on their journey towards their destination rather than the destination itself
  4. Make this happen by defining the journey as a social obligation between the teacher and the student, defined by strict norms and regulations that have to be followed to the last word
  5. Make them understand that only by fulfilling this obligation, the destination will ever materialize, in future
  6. Adopt creative, progressive, and respectful means to make their reward priceless and something for which they would work with all their heart
  7. Reward them amply every time they honor the rules and follow the system
  8. Punish them amply and appropriately when they flout norms or show disrespect
  9. Always be unbiased
  10. Never be judgmental, but be open to acts of manipulation and lying

Any student who realizes that the destination is priceless and can be attained only through continuous respect and dedication to the subject and to the teacher will never have to be told again on how to ‘be a student’

Last but not the least; never give up on any student. Every single student still has the inherent fire to learn. If we, as teachers, can clear the webs of misguidance and pampering from their minds, we would be surprised to see how wonderful each student turns out to be.

My suggestions are based on my own experience with undergraduate and postgraduate students in the past 14 years as a teacher and I have found my methods to be more successful than I had expected them to be.

Let us always remember: ‘The teacher exists because there are students’.

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