Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The Right Hand

                    A newly appointed teacher was assigned the duty to handle a class in a school. The teacher who was handling that class earlier had a very bad impression about the students. So she warned the new teacher about them and advised her to be stern, strict, rough and tough from the outset. Influenced by this advice, the new teacher entered the class with a grim face waving a cane to generate fear among the students. The students were frightened seeing her expression. She asked them a question to test their previous knowledge in the topic of study and ordered that those who knew the answer should raise their right hands. Many students raised their right hands. Others who did not know the answer sat still, anticipating her violent reaction. While examining the students, she found that a boy in the last row had raised his left hand instead of his right hand. She assumed it to be an expression of gross misbehaviour and indiscipline, as she was prejudiced by the report of the previous teacher. She noted that he was probably the naughtiest student in the class.
                    In a fit of anger, she rushed to the boy and thrashed him violently with the cane, shouting savagely, hoping that it would be an effective warning to all. The poor child fell down and cried aloud. Suddenly she noted that his right hand was crippled and that was why he raised his left hand instead of his right hand, to show that he knew the answer. The teacher was shocked. She tried her best to pacify the crying child. Later she learned that the child had been a victim of poliomyelitis and used to write with his left hand as his right hand was totally deformed. This incident transformed the teacher. She became friendly with every student, asked them personal questions and learned the names, abilities, defects, special talents and family background of every student in her class. With this personal and affectionate approach she could easily win their appreciation and admiration. She became a very successful teacher and was loved and respected by all her students.
                     Bias and prejudice may impair our judgment and damage human relations. Personal contact with intimate interaction with others is the best method of teaching and communication. Love is the language that can be understood even by the blind, deaf, illiterate and mentally retarded.
                     Jesus Christ advised to love our neighbours as we love ourselves.Let us get rid of all bitterness, passion, and anger. Let us be kind and tender-hearted  and ready to forgive one another.
© By Dr. Babu Philip, Professor, Cochin University of Science & Technology, Fine Arts Avenue, Kochi-682016, Kerala, India, Prof. Mrs. Rajamma Babu, Former Professor, St. Dominic's College, Kanjirappally and Leo. S. John, Maniparambil, Ooriyakunnath, Kunnumbhagom, Kanjirappally, Kottayam-686507, Kerala, India.
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