The true meaning of this story is so unique and original that it can only be passed on in words. The story is about a teacher’s wise idea who managed not only to teach the students sitting in the last rows, but he also helped the students understand the immeasurable importance and necessity of education. It was the first day of school year.The teacher decided not to start with a boring lecture but to explain the important lesson in life. Therefore, he turned his lecture into an interactive exercise.  The only material he used for this purpose was a squeezed paper ball (for each student) and a garbage bin, placed in the front part of the classroom. Then, he explained the rules of the game:

  • ‘Imagine that you are not a class, but the citizens of this country. Each one of you got a chance to get rich. However, in order to get into the higher-class society, you need to throw your paper balls into the bin, without moving from your chair.’

The results were, of course, predictable. Most of the students from the front rows hit the bin, yet, the students from the back rows could not handle the task. The teacher explained it this way:

The closer you are to your goal, the greater the chances for its accomplishments are. It’s called privilege that you need to be able to use properly. If you find yourselves too far from your goal, you start looking for excuses; blame others for inadequate conditions, see many obstacles on the way.. Yet, the one, who was closer to the goal, can easily focus on its accomplishment, without thinking about the irrelevant thing, including his own privilege. As a matter of fact, people who enjoy the privilege, become an obstacle for those who have never enjoyed it.”

Still, not until the teacher had completed his lecture, had the students been able to understand the message passed on. He concluded wisely:

“Let me put it this way, it is important for each one of you to understand that you all have this privilege to become better and more successful people. The privilege is called – EDUCATION. Do now whatever it takes in this  journey so that in the future you could use its fruits for accomplishing whatever you want, skillfully, and quickly going  round-about the ones who have decided to remain in the last rows,  still searching for excuses and putting blame on the others.”

Naturally, the education and the up-bringing of each individual child does not end here, yet the foundation is of highly importance. Help your children to understand this truth, if you wish, and you will be proud to see them grow into successful and well rounded persons. Keep this story for yourselves, share it with others and do not lose or forget this simple yet empowering thought and lecture!

The original article written by Natalija Laketić

The article translated from Serbian into English by Nada Radenković


One comment on “A WISE TEACHER

  1. “Any activity becomes creative when the doer cares about doing it right, or better.” -John Updike

    Liked by 1 person

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