This section will carry experiences of Educators who have moulded young people in difficult situations, applying the Don Bosco system of Education through Reason, Love of God and Kindness. May this be inspirational to teachers in handling students positively, bringing out the best in them through love and patience than through stern disciplining.
DISCIPLINING POSITIVELY : Dr. Cyprian Kallikaden sdb, Don Bosco, Itanagar
It was a case of stubbornly refusing to go to the study hall; they wanted a movie by all means. Being a holiday, the Salesian Educator was not averse to the idea. Nonetheless, they should earn it, and not have a movie whenever they demand one. The badminton court where the delegation met the Salesian with their ‘non-negotiable’ demand, had a five-feet tall metal pipe for tying the net. Hence the Salesian posed a wager that if any boy should succeed in standing on top of that post for over a minute, they would have their movie all right. There was a sudden burst of enthusiasm and hurried movements to call the best athletes – something more welcome than an unruly crowd of boys defying the authorities. Balancing themselves on a single foot atop a hollow pipe, could be mastered only after twenty minutes of repeated attempts, all the while cheered on by their companions counting the seconds in unison. Few survived more than thirty seconds on the badminton post, neither would the Salesian allow them to stay longer. He would weave some imaginary magic with his hands, distracting them with such wild magic spells and incantations, that in thirty seconds or so even the best athlete would lose his balance. Confounded by this incomprehensible magic, some boys began to gag the Salesian, while others held on to his hands, preventing them from weaving his magic. The best sportsman, after repeated attempts, reached a full minute of balancing on the post, and the boys shouted and shrieked at the success of their united efforts, as if an Olympic gold had been won. Unheeding the cries of the Salesian that they had played foul in gagging him and restricting his arms, the jubilant boys dragged him to the hall for a well deserved movie. Not only a showdown between the boys and the authorities had been averted, but a new game had been invented for keeping the boys busy during intervals.
The Salesian will never exchange the camaraderie and trust the event engendered, for all the disciplinary measures and time-tables in the world.