Teach English in ZhAngjiAfan Zhen - Huanggang Shi

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We all know that the culture and the environment we were born and raised in, can be the root of almost any kind of behavior we show as a human being life. Culture creates us. Culture is what we represent to this world. Culture is the reason behind most of our pleasant or unpleasant experiences. I was born in a country that culture and punishment used to share a very strong bond. In a country that the families can prevent their children from having a decent education as punishment just because they think they are right. This is even worse than physical punishment. I was born in Iran and I still live here. When I say Iran, I mean a country that still struggles with very old traditions. A total opposition of convention and modernity. Even now, in 2019. Isn’t culture about changing these conventions? Isn’t it about having the right of being properly educated without any fear of punishment? Aren’t we who create the culture through learning and teaching? Then why should we make learning so hard and unpleasant for other people? I think me and people my age are the last ones who have tasted the taste of any type of punishment, physically or mentally. Not necessarily at home, many experiences took place at schools. When I started school, physical punishment used to be common. I remember we were all afraid of our teachers. That was not because they were constantly angry or unkind, that was because the fear of the punishment didn’t leave us alone. Now I am 24 years old and after all these years, I still remember how it felt. Why is that? That is because the teachers used to believe they can make everything work through punishment and hitting. The culture dictated that. They thought they could “make” us do homework, “make” us behave, “make” us a perfect human being. Well, they were kind of successful, but not for a long time. The only reason we did all those things was fear, not understanding. I decided to become a teacher when I was 12 or 13, but I was horrified whenever I heard the word “English”. So, becoming an English teacher was not even my final option. I never considered it because I knew what was going on in the English institutes. Not all the English teachers were bad, but the bad ones were really bad! My parents tried to send me to English classes several times but I always ran. That was because being punished at school was enough for me and I really didn’t need another person to yell at me and humiliate me in front of everyone whenever I didn’t get something right! Those were the teachers we had to deal with every day for many years. Not just teachers. Even people who thought they could do or say anything to us just because we were children. The old rusty culture made them believe they must do so. They thought we would forget. We could forget some, we still remember many. Luckily after years I could find loving English teachers who changed my life forever and I am grateful. Thanks God years passed and changed everything for younger people. Now there are rules that strictly prohibit the teachers from punishing students physically or mentally. This makes me happy, but it is late for me and when I look back, I see I never enjoyed my school years although I was a person who craved for learning and studying. I think this was one of the many reasons I became a teacher. I wanted to show others that you can be a teacher, have authority and be kind all at the same time. The culture I grew up in made me understand that punishment doesn’t work, but not all those students were as lucky as me to change their perspective, put all the terrible experiences behind and move forward. Nothing good comes from punishment. Students shouldn’t be afraid. They should see respect and love. Some think discipline is the same as punishment, but it is not. Discipline means setting rules and being firm not being angry and strict. If the students break the rules, they shouldn’t be punished. They should face the consequences in other ways. For example, if they break the rules, they should be asked to write extra sentences, buy some ice cream for the class or be ready to present today’s lessons for next session. Punishment is not a good word to define the consequences because it has a very negative connotation. I wish this vicious circle of raising "punishers" by punishing once normal people would stop one day and people know that how every single action can affect our young people’s future.