One student studying Legal, Ethical and Cultural Issues in Counseling and Chaplaincy practice at Morling College was so impacted by her learning that she noticed significant changes within her Scripture class. Read her testimony here:
I was not sure whether I had thanked you for your help this semester. You have made a great difference to my relationship with my Scripture class.
Your insights into placing a high value on understanding culture have had a huge impact on my practice and the children's response. So much so that the full-time teacher has observed the significant differences in the class culture, children's behaviour and levels of engagement and learning.
I investigated the dominant culture of the children, the silence from the girls, only a couple of boys answering and high levels of aggressive, demeaning behaviour towards targeted students. In only two terms (due to COVID), the change has been incredibly significant and their growth makes those behaviours barely recognisable. Their teacher is so impressed. I did not stand on the other side of a divide and say, 'Come over here.' I looked at the cultural beliefs behind their scramble for control of seating arrangements, the silent girls, the derisive comments, their fear of not knowing the answer, the competitive rather than creative focus and the need to be seen to know and be heard.
They have become thoughtful participants in weekly discussions, calmly negotiating seating - even mixed gender groups, no more open derision of less physically able students, no posturing but more assistance to each other. Last week they designed posters, and girls retold the Bible story and facilitated the class discussion. Hands go up all over the room. They have embraced Jesus as the peaceful revolutionary who turned society's values upside down so the last would come first.
Stop, Breathe, Believe? Choose. Boys who have really struggled with aggression for the past couple of years are making positive choices with constructive behaviour. And just as Mary sat at His feet in the position of a student, Jesus came to invite each girl to learn, so everyone can reach their potential.
Thanks so much for being such a blessing to the school community by helping me with my understanding. I really appreciate it. I was told at the start of the year they would be a really difficult class, but you gave me a key with the foundation of understanding culture.