Everyone says to forgive and forget. Comment below with examples about when you forgave and forgot in the classroom. Forgiving simply let’s you lose the negative, and replace it with some more positive.
Everyone screws up. Not all the time (in general) but sometimes. These screw ups tend to increase when we are under pressure or trying to pass a deadline. As a headteacher, the unpopular role is to track down scewups and expose them. Followed by resolving them and after making sure the person recognises the issues and will not repeat them, forgive them.
My own career is littered with disasters others have bestowed on me. My first job gave me a wonderfully overpaid contract, then decided I cost too much and made my life hell so I’d leave. As an NQT, it is not hard for a perverse management to fail every lesson somehow.
Other school have insisted I created a company for their tax reasons. When i left, i left with a company which has proven impossible to shut down. I could go on all day… but you get the gist.
Forgiveness in the classroom let’s everyone move forward together.
However, in the classroom, all is totally different. Every day, every kid comes in on a fresh sheet. I put grudges and problems to one side. If the kid decides he or she will take a better tack in class, they are instantly rewarded with praise. Forgiving and forgetting is a part of the school ethos. It is a key lesson all children need to learn.
Children can journal their feelings of upset and how they will resolve the issue and then simply write they forgive that person. The students must learn that everyone, in all walks of life, make mistakes. Everyone needs and deserves forgiveness.
The weird thing they need to learn is a grudge is often very one-sided. Their opponent has probably long forgotten the argument, or is completely and blissfully unaware they had done anything wrong in the first place. The worry doesn’t chew up their soul and insides. Stop tormenting your own soul. Forgive. The best art is you never need if you don’t to..
Forgive And Forget – A key classroom skill you can use and practice daily in the classroom.
We do a daily Jamie ‘Peace out’ in our classroom. It is a wonderful daily 5 to 15 minute journey into mindfulness. She guides the class and helps them sort out their emotions. As she says, all emotions are good, all long as you are watching them from the outside. You need to let go of things which bother you.
Forgiveness can be over small things or mind numbingly big things. Such as who is responsible for modern climate change? The parents? The grandparents? If they had taken real action earlier, then we would be on a better, safer and environmentally kinder track. Should you blame them? Most of us were wildly ignorant of the forecasts and issues when we were young. The curious part being, regardless of who is to blame, being angry now won’t change the past. Forgiving and moving on together is the only solution.
Parents need to model daily how they accept and resolve mistakes.
Parents need to also actively show their kids forgiveness and model how to .Forgive And Forget. My son smashed every screen of my kindles by mistake. The Kindld Fires seem more unbreakable. But I have always forgiven him. After all, being angry does not bring back a broken screen. And speaking of broken screens, his wrap sheet is very long… 2 lap tops and a desktop to boot.
By teaching forgiveness to my staff, I actively encourage creativity. I was taught one simple thing in life, if you are not failing and screwing up, you are not testing your personal boundaries of achievement or those of your class. Teachers should be allowed a 10 to 25% annual idea failure rate. More than this, and they have not put enough effort into their plan and built in fail-safes. Less than that, and the kids are in a rut, not exploring their academic limits.
Stop Beating Youself Up For Past Failings.
Forgiveness should also be applied to oneself. We are our greatest critics. We are the ones who keep score of all our failings, disasters and mishaps. Did you know regret at not doing something is bigger than trying and failing. You also need to (as I frequently have to remind myself) need to remember that all those failings in your life are well spread apart with lots of goodness inbetween. Our brain likes to concertina our failings into one huge lump. Then it looks and feels like you are complete failure. The truth is completely opposite.
Forgiving yourself is the path to a happier future. Mistakes happen. I believe 99% of the problems in your life were not willfully done, they just happened. You need to learn from these mistakes, as I am sure you have and move on.
Regret of the undone is harder to bear than trying and failing. With the done comes experience of how to be better next time.
Likewise stop beating yourself up for things you didn’t do. I often wonder what other versions of my life would have been like. Marrying my first live from college, buying properties just before the boom, throwing caution to the wind and buying Bitcoins early etc. But none of these paths would have led me to you or you to me. I like my path. Every other path would have been different, but I don’t know if it would have been better.
You also need to forgive others. Especially if the wrongs they did happened before you. My youngest brother went down a very dark, alcohol and drug fuelled path. We all expected him dead before 30. But then he met the right woman and found his true path. She forgave his earlier excesses on the understanding they were in the past. Not present. You can do then same.
Forgive And Forget – A key classroom skill which starts with you forgiving yourself.
The first act of forgiveness is to write a letter saying you forgive them or an earlier version of yourself. You don’t need to ever send it if you don’t want to or can’t (such as forgiving a dead person( but you will feel the forgiveness unwrapping the pain and sorrow which is currently suffocating your entire being.
Do it today and you will see the difference immediately. Have a great day. As they say. Every story has a happy ending. If it doesn’t, it just means the story has yet to end.