Desensitize: To make emotionally insensitive or callous; specifically : to extinguish an emotional response to stimuli that formerly induced it.
Recently a discussion ensued concerning what term to use in a document when referring to our children. It was the perception of the majority that the use of the term children is derogatory to those individuals who consider themselves young adults.
It is important to understand that language, and the way we use it, can have very positive effects on a persons psyche or it can have very negative effects.
Though the use of the term “kid” in reference to our children is widely accepted, consider that period when the word “kid” prompted images of baby goats in the minds of our children and adults.
To be called a “kid” by an adult was, at that time, an insult to the child. After all, a kid, being a baby goat, is a stubborn, stinky, stupid, animal. Also, according to the Bible, a “kid” is the child of the cursed.
After generations of being called a “kid”, the self esteem of our children is now desensitized to the connection to their humanity. Their self image is now connected to their animalistic nature, not their human nature.
The use of the word student instead of child and young adult further decreases the connection to our children’s humanity.
By codifying their humanity through the use of the word “student” our children are forced even further away from the possibility of being considered an individual of importance with gifts and talents yet to be discovered, developed, and directed towards a positive connection to their world.
These are our children not their students and until we begin to understand that the image we are creating in the minds of our children is more important to how they feel about themselves than the money spent to instruct them, we will continue to fail to provide our children with an excellent education.
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