Alfred Adler, a great psychologist who was a contemporary of Freud and lived from 1870 to 1937, frequently remarked that the teacher was every student’s second chance. Adler believed that the teacher could overcome nearly all of the parents’ parenting flaws because of the teacher’s immense influence. New neuroscientific research is solidifying the crucial role of classroom teachers in primary and secondary education. In this article, I will discuss this crucial role from a variety of perspectives: poetry, proverbs, cultural tradition, and neuroscience. This article aims to pique readers’ interest in my thesis and encourage educators to believe in their own abilities as rehabilitators in the lives of children and adolescents.
All of life is a story—lived forward and comprehended backwards—but a story nonetheless. Therefore, we will begin with a portion of “The Velveteen Rabbit,” a children’s book written by Margery Williams. Williams tells the story of a young boy who receives a stuffed rabbit as a toy in this book, which is essentially a fable about how love can restore relationships. He has been given a lot of toys, but he is ill. Indeed, the nursery is overflowing with stuffed, mechanical, and other types of toys. He receives a rabbit with round bottom and real thread whiskers. It tends to tip over if not held, and it cannot stand on its own. The boy hugs and kisses the velveteen rabbit every day and night for many days, making it the nursery’s most beloved toy.
Because toys are what they are, they get jealous, so it turns out that the other toys in the nursery start to make fun of the rabbit when it gets angry. “You’re not real,” they mock you. Particularly vicious are the mechanical toys. Because he cannot move like they can, they tell the rabbit that they are aware that he is not real. The rabbit feels terribly hurt by all of these mean and horrible comments, so he turns to the wisest toy in the nursery, the skinless horse, in a desperate attempt to understand his surroundings.
The child had previously favored the skinless horse as a toy; He was smothered in kisses, hugs, and fur so much that his button eyes were falling out. But the love he had received had made him wise and honest, and now that he was sitting in the back of the boy’s closet with all the other toys that had been thrown away, he felt like an experienced elder.
The velveteen rabbit came up to the skinless horse and informed him that the other toys were making fun of and jeering at him. He told him what they had said about him not being “real” and asked the skinless horse a profound question, which the rabbit didn’t realize was profound: What is genuine?” As a result of being loved, the skinless horse answered, “Real is something you become, not something you are.” It takes quite a while.” After considering this response, the rabbit then posed another significant inquiry: Is it painful to become real?
The wise and dependable skinless horse responded as follows: Yes, becoming real hurts. One eye is hanging out and all of your skin is rubbed off before you even realize it. Things with sharp edges rarely become real because of this.”
At this point, I’d like to remind my readers that, like the educational philosopher Friedreich Froebel, I think stories have an inherent power that doesn’t need to be explained. Therefore, I will not inform you of the story or its moral; rather, I will allow the truth to penetrate your heart.
The Neuroscience of the Second Chance In order to become qualified educators, nearly all educators have studied attachment theory at some point in their education. John Bowlby was the original proponent of attachment theory, which holds that the “bond” between a mother and her unborn child establishes important developmental patterns that influence the child’s adjustment and behavior. Bowlby talked about the bond between a mother and her child, but later researchers have realized that the bond between a male or female primary caregiver and an infant is what causes attachment. It is possible for attachments to be “secure” or “insecure.”
The child feels loved and lovable in a secure attachment. A child who has this outlook on life will be able to successfully interact with other children and adults. This child will believe that people care about them, will attend to their wants and needs, and will comfort them when they need it. This kid will also be able to enter the world of new knowledge, figures, and facts without feeling overwhelmed. On the other hand, a child who is attached insecurely will form opposing beliefs. This kid won’t be able to trust adults or believe that adults are comforting them. Because it will cause this child too much anxiety, learning new facts will be difficult for him or her. In either case, the important neural pathways established by our initial attachments serve as the internal frameworks through which we perceive the world.
Mirror neurons are a group of neurons found in the brain that have recently been discovered by recent neuroscientific research. Social cognition and interpersonal relationships are heavily influenced by this fascinating subset of neurons. When we do something, mirror neurons are triggered. dance, for instance, play music, or move our hands or arms. Amazingly, they also come on when we observe another person doing the same thing. To put it another way, mirror neurons are the electrical and chemical substrates that make it easy to interact with other people. When we smile and when we see a smile, they come on. They come on when we or someone else frowns. They respond to other people’s nonverbal behavior that we observe. Social relationships are held together by mirror neurons.
The majority of the formation of secure or insecure attachment is attributed to the mirror neurons. However, even as we get older, these neuron continue to play an important role in how humans interact with one another because they continue to grow and develop. A child in a classroom responds with feelings of comfort when they see a smiling teacher. They feel similar emotions inside themselves whenever they see a frown or cross expression. The teacher is able to correct unsecure attachments because mirror neurons play an important role. This correction establishes new, positive patterns that support a child’s sense of love, care, and nurture outside of the classroom.
The Poetry of the Second Chance A lawyer started writing poetry in the early 20th century in the United States. Greek and Latin scholar Edgar Lee Masters He had discovered the Greek Anthology, a collection of Greek poetry, through his studies. These were brief poems and epigrams that were written from the perspective of deceased people—known and unknown—and made observations about their lives. Masters wrote Spoon River Anthology, a collection of post-modern “epitaphs” of former residents of the fictional Spoon River, Illinois, inspired by the Greek Anthology.
Three of his poems strongly support the idea that the teacher is every student’s second chance. In relation to my thesis, I will quote each of the three poems one by one and say a few words about them.