Paths and Choices: Teaching/Mentoring Styles 4.1.1

If the authoritative style of parenting is more likely to exhibit and result in the characteristics of moral Growth, how about teaching/mentoring styles and methods?  Paraphrasing some of the previous parenting behaviors and consequences to apply to teaching/mentoring and learning might look like this:

An authoritative teacher/mentor is affectionate and engaged; sets limits and enforces consequences; uses reason, logic, and appropriate negotiation; and empowers a student’s decision-making so that the student is more likely to be happy, responsible, and kind; good at problem-solving; self-motivated and confident; cooperative; an excellent student; and a leader.

An authoritarian teacher/mentor is emotionally aloof; is bossy and likely to say “because I said so”; uses physical punishments or verbal insults; and dismisses a student’s feelings so that the student is more likely to be moody and anxious; well-behaved; an average to good student; and a follower.

A permissive teacher/mentor is affectionate; is anxious to please and ends many sentences by asking “Okay?”; is indulgent; can’t say no and stick to it; and is easily manipulated so that the student is more likely to be demanding and whiny; easily frustrated; lacking in kindness and empathy; a poor to average student; and a follower.

A passive teacher/mentor is emotionally removed or indifferent; is uninvolved; abdicates discipline; and is inconsistent and unpredictable so that the student is more likely to be clingy and needy; inappropriate and rude; likely to get into trouble; a poor student; and a follower.

Teacher/Mentor-Student Cause-Effect Thought Experiment 4.1.2:  Consider the parent/teacher/mentor causes and child/student effects in the list above.  Do they have a basis in actual and practical everyday life?  How have you seen them in action among teachers/mentors and students?

Phyllis Ballata

Without Words We Cannot Think

“The Master doesn’t talk, he acts. / When his work is done, / the people say, ‘Amazing: / we did it all by ourselves.’ ”  Lao tse [Lao tzu] (b. 604 BCE), Tao te ching #17 (Translator Stephen Mitchell)


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