Accepting Mediocrity {Think About It}

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I love learning little lessons from my kids, and spending time with them.

Yesterday we had Princess V’s parent teacher conference. I dropped the smaller Princesses off at a friends, and went to see how my child is doing.  It’s always nice to hear from another adult who interacts with my child how they are doing.  One thing Mrs B. said has stuck with me, because it’s something Mark and I have talked extensively about. Mediocrity.

Think About It!

What does mediocre mean?

Of only ordinary or moderate quality; neither good nor bad; barely adequate
Will we accept mediocrity in our lives? Are we okay with being neither good nor bad? 
Or do we want to be better? 
Think About It!
Unfortunately at the beginning of the year Princess V’s class went through a number of teachers. One moved up as Vice Principal, then they had a sub, and finally Mrs. B was hired.  This was our first parent teacher with Mrs. B, so she took the time to explain more about her teaching style, and what she would like to see accomplished with all the students.  Her key point went a little as follows “Some of the students are here (hand making a level in front of her). This is where they should be (moving the hand up a few inches), and this is where I want them to be and where I will push them to be (moving hand up more).”
In my own terms, she is pushing them to be better. She doesn’t accept mediocrity in her class. She knows the kids have the potential and is working with them to reach that.  She told me though, that if a parent asks her not to push their child, she won’t.

Who would want that tough?

Think About It!

What happens when we accept mediocrity in our lives?

For me, it means not being the best I can be. I want to be the best! Now I’m no perfectionist, but that’s OK. You don’t have to be perfect to strive for the best. You don’t even have to be negative. Actually, being negative won’t help you at all. Pushing past mediocre means accepting your best in the moment, and then trying again.

Mrs. B told me a practice she uses in the classroom, that at first sent me reeling a little, but as I thought on it, and she explained it more, it made sense.

If a child brings her a picture that is scribbled, she has them walk it to the garbage, rip it up and throw it out.

Now pull your jaws back up, I know what you’re thinking – Harsh!  I had the same thought at first. They are only in Kindergarten after all. But here’s the thing – they CAN color in the lines. They know how to, and they can do it. So why would they settle for scribbling?  Mrs. B talks to them about that, and asks them if they are in a hurry for something. Since they obviously aren’t in a hurry to be anywhere else at school, she has them take responsibility and then try again.

It makes sense to me, and I’m perfectly happy that Princess V has a teacher who strives for the best in her students, pushes them to reach for it, and teaches them responsibility for their own actions and choices.

Think About It!

Do you accept Mediocrity in your home?  I personally push for my kids to brush their teeth as best as they can, make their beds neat, and keep their clean nice. I don’t settle for a chore half done, teeth brushed with water, or blankets tossed in piles. 

One thought on “Accepting Mediocrity {Think About It}”

  1. I think Mrs B is being a little judgmental about the scribbled coloring. Not every kid in K has motor control. But I do like that she has high expectations. When I taught I was very frustrated, especially when I taught inner city, about how low expectation were for kids. I would rather be surprised by a kid exceeding my expectations than never believing that he/she could do more.

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