Enablers, Deniers, and More – Oh My!

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You’ve heard the saying, “The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.” It is a true statement. After all, have you ever seen a tree fall across the yard from a tree –without a tornado moving it? Probably not – but we would love to hear your stories if have so feel free to comment. 🙂

Recently, our Provost shared a book with the School of Education faculty. What book are you wondering? Really? Apples don’t fall far from the tree. Understanding the behavior of parents and students by Bea Lewis. It is a great, quick read that we recommend; we also recommend not walking too fast if you are “reading and walking” at the noon hour. Right, Dr. Wendy? 😉

Right, Dr. V. It only took me an hour of walking around and around the IL ‘square,’ but I got the book read. The gal who was eating her lunch in IL 214 might have thought I was a bit crazy as I walked in circles and would laugh out loud as I read the author’s stories. (Actually a lot of us think that from time to time, and still think you are brilliant so no worries there! 🙂 People thought the same thing about Albert Einstein, you know?! Sorry – continue on…) Some of those stories made me feel like I was back teaching elementary school. And, many of Bea’s stories made me shake my head in agreeance. The book is great. Be ready for some laughs as this real-life story unfolds.

The author, who was a teacher, middle school administrator, turned Hearing Officer, mentions in Chapter 1 four different types of parents that she dealt with during her educational tenure: 1). Enablers, 2). Deniers, 3). Angry Battlers, and 4). The Perfect Storm.

Lewis also goes on and shares with us in Chapter 2 four different kinds of students she came across during her career: 1). Explainers, 2). Enabled, 3). Blamers, and 4). I Don’t Even Know I Need to be Saved.

Finally, in Chapter 3, Bea Lewis gives us educators a glimpse at the four different varieties of teachers, yes teachers, that she put up with in her 36 years of being an educator: 1). Book Sayers, 2). Gotchas, 3). Not Me, and 4). I Don’t Even Like Children (a.k.a. Serial Dream Killers).

A few earmarked pages from Chapter 3 that had mind-provoking statements on them were page 28 where it stated, “I took off the rose-colored glasses and faced the reality that not everyone in the school did was in the best interest of the kids. That was a very sad truth, but a truth nonetheless.”

Then on page 31 she shares what a friend had said to her years ago, “The police ought to be at the teacher’s credit union on payday to arrest some teachers for stealing money they have not earned.”

Lastly, on page 36 Lewis gives some classroom management advice, “Managing student behavior is like playing a baseball game. You’re not going to hit a homerun every time you’re at bat. Sometimes you strike out.”

Parents, students, teachers…thank goodness 90% of them are awesome. The other 10%, well…

We used to tell our students’ parents at conferences – “I’ll only believe half of what your child tells us about your home life, if you believe only half of what your child says about school life.” And believe us when we say, we’ve heard some unbelievable stories over the years about families and what goes on in their homes.

We hope we’ve sparked your interest to read the book. Thank you to our Provost for the gift!

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Stay Calm & Lead On!
Profs Dr. C. & Dr. V.

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