Signs of Discouragement

So The Rapper walks into a middle school today and sees a sign someone has posted. This is not uncommon. The sign reads, “Do good on any test you take. Failure is not an option.” There are a couple of issues with this:

1. If you’re encouraging students in a school setting, of all places, to be academic challengers, isn’t it imperative that you use correct grammar? Shouldn’t we model this admonishment in every sense of the word, down to using the word “well” when appropriate, not “good”? Maybe I’m wrong.

2. I hate, hate, hate it when people say “Failure is not an option.” I get it; it’s one of those pump ’em up sayings, but it’s a lie. Failure is always an option. In fact, we typically have at least two options in anything we set out to do: succeed or fail. Those are the facts.

Just when you think there’s reason to believe things might improve, they don’t. … I’m sad.

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~ by MsInklination on October 20, 2010.

One Response to “Signs of Discouragement”

  1. I agree with you! I also hate it when grown ups say, “my bad”. I guess they’re trying to be hip or something?

    I hate signs using ‘k’ instead of ‘c’ – Kaption’s Kitchen… (see the red underline here)

    I could go on and on…

    However, I know smart folks (like yourself) surely cringe when my punctuation, and probably grammar too, fall short.

    Where small town education failed me – I’ve been blessed to have smart folks in my life, and through the simple hearing or reading* (of their spoken or written communications), have learned and MODELED** the most correct use of language.

    I hardly ever get ‘who vs whom’ correct so I reconfigure myself so I don’t have to use it – exactly like I did in high school tennis as I contorted my whole body around so as not to use my (weak) backhand, but instead use my powerful forehand. You CANNOT play a good game of tennis, if you play against good tennis players***, using only one swing.
    And it sure messes up your entire body (literally the backbone).

    I doubt the leadership (teacher, principal) at the best schools would allow incorrectness, especially on the posters to be used as the encouragement toward excellence?

    I’ve given, those specially gifted friends of mine, permission to give correction so I continue to learn and be my goodest, (oops red underline clue) best!

    This is surely what we want for our impressionable youth and students.

    ?: What’s our responsibility where that poster is placed?

    *read, read, read – and visually take in correct punctuation.
    **Modeled – this is your point.
    What children see or hear – they model, or learn.
    ***our youth are competing in the global mark and we must surround them with the best and brightest models so they are continually sharpened and challenged

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