Cultivate Virtue, But Get Real

Student: I’m worried that our class just isn’t moving fast enough through the material. We’re not getting much done.

Teacher: Well, a classical education isn’t about covering material. It’s about cultivating virtue.

Student: No one is cultivating virtue in your class. That’s the problem. You spend so much time every day lecturing the boys on why they shouldn’t talk out of turn, why they shouldn’t distract you, shouldn’t distract each other… We never accomplish anything. It’s just a lot of pointless scolding.

Teacher: Well, your class can be quite unruly.

Student: Actually, your class is unruly. Those boys don’t mess around in our other classes.

Teacher: Really?

Student: No. They sit quietly and listen for Mr. Boone and Mrs. Sanders.

Teacher: Why do you think that is?

Student: Because they’re sort of afraid of Mr. Boone.

Teacher: Well, I don’t want students to be afraid of me. As someone who cares about the cultivation of virtue, I am going after the hearts of my students.

Student: That’s not working either. The boys in my class despise you. They call you “Mr. Twinkie Talk” behind your back. They love Mr. Boone, though.

-from my latest for CiRCE

Published by Joshua Gibbs

Sophist. De-activist. Hack. Avid indoorsman.

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