Study time. African american father teaching his little daughter how to read, sitting together with book on bed, empty space

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Some people think they only teach Mandt when they are in front of a group of students or employees. For some people, this means they teach Mandt once or twice a month. For others, they may only teach Mandt once or twice a year. We tell our students that they serve as role models for the people with whom they are working. Guess what? We all serve as role models 24/7/365. We have the opportunity to be constantly teaching Mandt. Several things happened this week that showed me the importance of this.

First, I was watching one of those television news magazine show recently and since October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, they were running a piece about how to teach children that domestic violence is neither normal or acceptable. They interviewed several parents who said the same thing. “I can teach my child what a loving and respecting relationship is supposed to look like.” The point being if children learn how to love and respect others they will be less likely to abuse others and be abused by others. These parents were talking about providing children with positive role models. More power to them.

Second, I have a friend/former co-worker who has recently separated from an abusive spouse. She has made many posts about how her child saw the bad side of the relationship and now she is doing everything she can to show her child the positive side of life. She is working hard to be a positive role model for her child. More power to her.

Finally, while cleaning the house yesterday I put in a “Best of Broadway” cd (I know, old school). A song from Into the Woods came on entitled “Children Will Listen.” Guess what? It talks about how whatever is going on around them, children will listen. We need to make sure we surround our children with positive role models to help them navigate through life. More power to us.

So, rather than just telling our staff that they serve as role models when they are working with people, we all need to realize that life is our classroom. Every moment of every day is our opportunity to role model for those around us. If we treat people with dignity and respect, if we work at creating positive, healthy relationships with others, if we help create environments where people can say in this place and with these people I feel safe we will be serving as positive role models. We will, in essence, be teaching Mandt to everyone we encounter. More power to everyone!

Dr.Dale Shannon – Mandt Faculty

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