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TOPIC: Too Violent

Too Violent 22 Jan 2012 23:16 #113757

My boy just came home to tell me that his teacher told him he could no longer do reading reports on his Warhammer 40K codex, which is one of things we've been able to get him to read. Too violent.

This is a nationally accredited teacher that has won a couple of awards and is well respected. She's THE teacher to get in the school. But -- she has no children and doesn't connect well with boys. This shortcoming was not apparent when my daughter had her but now that she has my high-spirited boy (one of two) it's become apparent that this is a weak spot in her skill-set. I don't think I'm in a position to make a change (especially with the school district scared shitless of anything resembling conflict) so I'm going to focus on having the boy work inside the system.

Option 2 is to have Loter stop in for a faculty meeting.

S.
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Re: Too Violent 22 Jan 2012 23:31 #113759

That's too bad. Kindle Girl (a girl geek friend of The Spawn's who spends a lot of time at my house) had her paren's called in because the English teacher was concerned at the level of violence in her creative writing assignments. She likes to write D&D fanfic. Fortunately, there is a teacher in the school that runs D&D club and writes stuff himself who was able to speak up for her and tell the English teacher that Kindle Girl's writing was actually rather good.
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Re: Too Violent 23 Jan 2012 00:17 #113765

The world sure has changed. I was recently going through a bunch of old crap my parents dumped off on me to store, including a bunch of my old creative writing assignments. In grade 4, I was writing Friday the 13th fanfic, with Jason getting decapitated in the end by the heroine, The Cute Chick. My teacher's comment for the story? "I'm glad the cute chick was ok."
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Re: Too Violent 23 Jan 2012 00:40 #113770

I think the teacher has an obligation to contact the parent about something like this...rather than just discourage the kid. If the parent is OK with it or can explain to the teacher why it is fine then she should be cool with it.

Discouraging a child from reading anything these days is pretty stupid. Most would rather just sit in front of TV or play a videogame. If the boy likes to read about space marines lopping off Ork heads then so be it. I don't see the harm in it (especially since the parents are totally fine with it). Try to speak with the teacher and maybe some sort of agreement can be reached. If she really is this award winning teacher I think that is least she could do.
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Re: Too Violent 23 Jan 2012 00:51 #113772

Welcome to the wonderful world of the modern school system. Check your boys at the door, please.

More broadly, considering the books that are offered to kids these days, it's not a surprise you have trouble getting your son to read. The publishing industry and those who support it really don't think much of boys.

I wonder what that "award-winning" teacher's views on censorship of other books like Huckleberry Finn are.
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Re: Too Violent 23 Jan 2012 00:51 #113773

I totally used to write D&D fanfic for my creative writing assignments in elementary school. And always illustrated them with crudely done copies of the already crudely done original monster manual artwork.

Sounds like the teacher just needs to be talked to about what's going on and why it's important for him to be able to continue doing it. I totally get where she's coming from, but at the end of the day, getting kids to do academic stuff with just about anything is better than teaching them to hate academics. Some of my best learning came from reading D&D books, doing math for Final Fantasy and writing about RPG characters.
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Re: Too Violent 23 Jan 2012 02:03 #113787

Is there anyway to continue with the book reports but moderate the violence. That teaches several lessons to your boy -- I would imagine the teacher would be amenable to something like that.
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Re: Too Violent 23 Jan 2012 05:52 #113821

The teacher did send us a heads-up through our boy. I don't have an issue with how it was handled as much as the concept involved. Last year his teacher had a better instinct for it and was letting him write from the books. Most of his exposition is about the game aspects not the story arc (which I'll admit isn't my favorite flavor) and that's likely where we'll direct his efforts. With a bit of care he can likely write on very similar books and, if he focuses on the die rolls instead of the weapon names he'll likely be alright.

The teachable lesson to my boy is this -- He needs to work in the environment being presented to him, and part of his success is going to be based on his ability to work within the rule set in play.

S.
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Re: Too Violent 23 Jan 2012 06:13 #113823

Bullwinkle wrote:
Welcome to the wonderful world of the modern school system. Check your boys at the door, please.

More broadly, considering the books that are offered to kids these days, it's not a surprise you have trouble getting your son to read. The publishing industry and those who support it really don't think much of boys.

I wonder what that "award-winning" teacher's views on censorship of other books like Huckleberry Finn are.

No kidding. These are the moments where I find myself overwhelmingly grateful for a daughter...

And then I see the neighborhood pre-teens dressed like they're on the corner stroll and, worse, make the mistake of listening to them talk amongst themselves and find myself wondering when, exactly, science managed to evolve to the point where they could give a nest of pit vipers human form....

Good luck with this one Sag. I'd have a hard time going with "work within the ruleset presented" as it's never been my particular strong suit. I generally go for "bend the environment to my will" approach. It ain't ever easier, but it's damndably more satisfying.
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Re: Too Violent 23 Jan 2012 06:30 #113824

Here's the tricky part Dog -- what question do I ask the teacher to get her to reconsider her outlook on the situation? It's tough to get someone on the top of their game to review the validity of their approach.

S.
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