I was helping the students with math subtractions, when the teacher had to step out of class for a bit. A couple of the boys rose from their seats and started to wander about, looking out the window, and watching their friends do their work. It is very hard to have the students sit in one place for long. A skidoo passing on the road, or a plane flying by, has them gazing out the window.
“Guys, unless you are coming to me with work, you need to sit down,” I told them.
“OK,” one of the said and they returned to their seats and continued working.
I am rather taken aback. No explanations, such as “I was just checking what Charles was doing or looking at the birds” and no confrontation … just a simple OK.
Is this what respecting elders is about. Raised in a European family, respecting grandparents and older people was part of my upbringing. This is a quality I passed onto my own children. It seems that we live in a culture now, where our elders are expected to quietly slip away into 55 years plus residences. Here I see elders raising grandchildren and as a vital part of the community. They are revered and respected for their wisdom, experience, and maybe just for being old and having lived this long.