Ever been honored with such a certificate.
This is to certify that
You are the most HONEST student of 2015
And even if you had one,people might just have a good laugh at it.Its such a rare achievement to be appreciated,yet we all want everyone else to be honest with us,from merchandised stores to our kids. Lets be honest are we really encouraging honesty in our children?
Let me break it down- the way we judge our children and students is fostering shame, hubris, cynicism and cheating.
It is not easy to force people to do what they do not want to do.At first the cane was the most common instrument of coercion in schools.Another method was public shamming.School masters would ridicule misbehaving or poorly performing children in front of their classmates.Today we rarely use cane but we have a way…we rely now on system of testing , grading and ranking children to motivate them to do their school work.Children are made to feel ashamed (inferior) if they perform worse than their peers and proud (superior) if they perform better.Our children’s worth lies in the grades they get.
Our system of grading and ranking to motivate students seems almost perfectly designed to promote cynicism and cheating.Students are constantly told about the value of high grades.Some children may just not be able to memorize all those things which they will anyway forget after the test,out of desperation they resort to cheating. On the other hand top students are under pressure of getting into top collages ,cheating is win win for all.Your parents, teachers, school…everyone wants you to succeeded.Being “smart” is what everyone wants,no one cares about being “honest”.
Let me tell you about the best of all the teachers….have you ever read a hadith where the beloved Prophet (May peace be upon him) tells the Sahabas…”Please do your homework and I will test you on it.”or “memorize the khutba there will be a quiz on Monday”or this is a big one”How much Quran have each one of you memorized?”
What! never read anything like this…Hmmm
So how come we have all these ideas about education and that tests and quizzes are the only way to measure how much a child knows?
If you carefully see the way of the Prophet(May peace be upon him).He educates his companions by words of encouragement and hikmah and love.People wanted to hang around him.They were motivated to learn and preach Quran.
Honesty and truthfulness are celebrated in Islam
“Oh you who believe! Eat not up each other’s property by unfair and dishonest means.” (4:29)
The Prophet often used to say in his khutbas:
“Remember, there is no faith in him who is not trustworthy; there is no place for him in religion who cares not for his pledged word or promise.”
We may not be telling our children to cheat or lie,but we are creating a perfect situation for them to practice all these vice.
We do have certificates and appreciation for reading or some competitive math exam.Lets print some certificates and encourage our kids when they are honest and truthful(its not so easy to be honest) and not just brush off their effort by saying….”Be careful next time!”
We print a lot of those certificates from Here.