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Teacher Tells 10-Year-Old God Is Not an Acceptable 'Idol'

*Public School article posted for discussion*

Teacher Tells 10-Year-Old God Is Not an Acceptable 'Idol' (VIDEO)

by Mary Fischer 

elementary school

Ugh. Can someone please explain to me what the heck this world is coming to? Because after hearing that a 10-year-old girl was not allowed to choose God as her idol to write about for a school assignment, I really don't know whether to scream or cry.

Mom Erica Shead explains how her daughter, Erin, came home from school on Wednesday upset. When she drew a diagram in class with the words, "I look up to God," in the middle of it -- her teacher told her that God was not an acceptable idol, and that she'd have to start the assignment all over again.

The poor kid wound up choosing Michael Jackson (basically going from one extreme to the other) as an alternative.

Erin told her mother she wanted to write about God because "God created the earth" and added that she's "doing the best she can."

And as you can imagine, Erica is absolutely irate over the teacher's decision, as she should be.

Take a look at this video clip to hear more about what happened.

 Video here

That poor child. This makes me absolutely sick to my stomach. Who the hell is that teacher to tell a child who she can and cannot look up to? By telling her to choose someone else, and by not even allowing her to keep the original assignment at school (you know, because it's SO offensive), she's basically teaching her that her faith doesn't matter and isn't worth believing in. And that's just sad, wrong, disgusting, ridiculous, and well ... really shitty, if you ask me.

What would've been the harm in letting her write about God? It's not like she was preaching to the class or anything. She was simply following the instructions she was given to complete her school work -- and she basically got punished for it. Yes, it is a punishment to take a child's beautiful, creative idea and classify it as wrong, when it clearly isn't.

Oh, and another thing, I'd be appalled about this incident no matter where in the country it happened. But in Millington, Tennessee -- right outside of Memphis?!? If kids can't express their love for God in the Bible belt, it certainly doesn't offer much hope to the rest of the U.S.

I don't blame Erica one bit for going straight to the principal. I would've done the same thing in her shoes, because the way her daughter was treated is unacceptable. Schools should be a place where children are encouraged to stand up for what they believe instead of hiding from it.

That teacher should be ashamed of herself. All I can say is thank GOD my kid isn't in her class.

Do you think Erin should have been allowed to write about her true idol?

by on Sep. 13, 2013 at 3:13 PM
Replies (11-20):
PurpleCupcake
by on Sep. 14, 2013 at 8:41 AM
5 moms liked this

I Think I would agree on God not being an idol....I just don't like the terminology. 

I also think the assignment was to find a human to look up to. Someone who achieved goals for thier life. I don't see God fitting into the assignment that way. Again, I have a problem with the terminology. I don't think God achieves goals. He/She (whoever you believe in) is the goal. Does that make sense?

I don't have a problem with the child going religious though. I think a more appropriate religious subject to talk about would have been a pastor/preacher. Or perhaps a figure from the bible such as Moses, Noah or John the Baptist. Someone that the child would look to as someone they wanted to be like. 

Just my 2 measly cents. Not starting a debate, I just have issues with the terminology & I think the point of the assignment was missed. 







HOMESCHOOL! Where Zombie Tinker Bell is Art!


redhead-bedhead
by Bronze Member on Sep. 14, 2013 at 8:51 AM
1 mom liked this

Well said!

Quoting PurpleCupcake:

I Think I would agree on God not being an idol....I just don't like the terminology. 

I also think the assignment was to find a human to look up to. Someone who achieved goals for thier life. I don't see God fitting into the assignment that way. Again, I have a problem with the terminology. I don't think God achieves goals. He/She (whoever you believe in) is the goal. Does that make sense?

I don't have a problem with the child going religious though. I think a more appropriate religious subject to talk about would have been a pastor/preacher. Or perhaps a figure from the bible such as Moses, Noah or John the Baptist. Someone that the child would look to as someone they wanted to be like. 

Just my 2 measly cents. Not starting a debate, I just have issues with the terminology & I think the point of the assignment was missed. 


AutymsMommy
by Silver Member on Sep. 14, 2013 at 10:27 AM
1 mom liked this

Well, I don't want my child to listen to a presentation about Michael Jackson - it offends me. Should that not be allowed either?


Quoting paknari:

Although I am Christian and I think that God is a great idol, I can see why the girl wasn't allowed to write a paper about it in school. There are a lot of crazy ass people out there that would sue if little tommy heard a paper that Was offensive.



I am a Home Schooling, Vaccinating, Non spanking, Nightmare Cuddling, Dessert Giving, Bedtime Kissing, Book Reading, Stay at Home Mom. I believe in the benefit of organized after school activities and nosy, involved parents. I believe in spoiling my children. I believe that I have seen the village and I do not want it anywhere near my children. Now for the controversial stuff:  we're Catholic, we're conservative, and we own guns (now there's no need to ask, lol).             Aimee















WizardOfAhs
by on Sep. 14, 2013 at 10:30 AM
1 mom liked this

First of all, we have to look at this assignment from the child's perspective, not our own. She doesn't understand the term 'idol' in the same sense as an adult Christian would. The explanation of the assignment led her to believe she could choose whom she looked up to, thought was inspiring, and wanted to emulate. 

Second, I am quite sure it is never as cut and dry as we would like, being a ps teacher. I know of several Christian ps teachers who would not have allowed it as well. Only because they would not want Allah, Shiva, or any other deity to be allowed either.  I certainly would have approached the little girl differently, maybe suggested she do 2 assignments? Kids aren't stupid....a 10 yr. old could easily be told they legalities and understand. 

AutymsMommy
by Silver Member on Sep. 14, 2013 at 10:31 AM
2 moms liked this


I don't understand this at all.

You're forcing your ideal that a child SHOULD look up to someone who has made a great impact on society. What if Susie looks up to her mother? Still not acceptable? I mean, mom will never move mountains.

The paper wouldn't require grading on "religious beliefs" - assuming she wrote the assignment as per the instructions, the teacher would be grading the writing, not the content necessarily.

Quoting Mandallyn:

I don't think that's appropriate for school. I would be outraged if my son came home saying he'd learned about god in public school. I do think children should be pushed to learn more about human rights activists who have managed to make great change in their societies, no matter if that person is a religious figurehead or not. It's people who make change in our physical world, the spiritual should be something left for parents to teach at home. Even if only the teacher was reading it, I still believe it's not appropriate for a public school.  Asking a teacher to grade an essay on a student's religous beliefs irks me deeply. The child's faith only matters to her personally. Her faith will not make the world bend to accommodate her.



I am a Home Schooling, Vaccinating, Non spanking, Nightmare Cuddling, Dessert Giving, Bedtime Kissing, Book Reading, Stay at Home Mom. I believe in the benefit of organized after school activities and nosy, involved parents. I believe in spoiling my children. I believe that I have seen the village and I do not want it anywhere near my children. Now for the controversial stuff:  we're Catholic, we're conservative, and we own guns (now there's no need to ask, lol).             Aimee















Mandallyn
by Member on Sep. 14, 2013 at 11:23 AM
2 moms liked this

I don't understand how I'm forcing my ideal on anyone.

Yes, children should look up to humans that made a difference, whether its volunteer work at a local animal shelter, or someone who helped propel change across a nation.  If it had been a paper about how her idol was Aphrodite would that be acceptable?  

Religios belief does not belong in public school.  Period.  There are far too many other religions for one to be acceptable, and not all others.   I'm not against teaching about various religions and the cultures that surround them, merely the belief that any religious faith belongs in public school.


Quoting AutymsMommy:


I don't understand this at all.

You're forcing your ideal that a child SHOULD look up to someone who has made a great impact on society. What if Susie looks up to her mother? Still not acceptable? I mean, mom will never move mountains.

The paper wouldn't require grading on "religious beliefs" - assuming she wrote the assignment as per the instructions, the teacher would be grading the writing, not the content necessarily.

Quoting Mandallyn:

I don't think that's appropriate for school. I would be outraged if my son came home saying he'd learned about god in public school. I do think children should be pushed to learn more about human rights activists who have managed to make great change in their societies, no matter if that person is a religious figurehead or not. It's people who make change in our physical world, the spiritual should be something left for parents to teach at home. Even if only the teacher was reading it, I still believe it's not appropriate for a public school.  Asking a teacher to grade an essay on a student's religous beliefs irks me deeply. The child's faith only matters to her personally. Her faith will not make the world bend to accommodate her.




MacMamaof5
by on Sep. 14, 2013 at 11:49 AM
3 moms liked this

I am going to keep my opinion on God and the Idol thing and just say----

I HATE that the little girl's mother compromised by allowing her to turn in another assignment.  I wouldn't have made the girl turn in a second assignment on anyone.  And just for the record.  If it was the fact that the girl needed a "HUMAN" to idolize--the person JESUS CHRIST does come to mind and PROVES that GOD is all you need and HE does help you to attain your goals--in the eyes of a CHRISTIAN and our beliefs.  Oops...did that slip out?

paknari
by on Sep. 14, 2013 at 12:36 PM
Lol then you are the type of parent that ruined it for everyone in the first place. People being offended by every little thing and threaghtening schools and other places for voicing their opinions is what caused the separation in the first place.


Quoting AutymsMommy:

Well, I don't want my child to listen to a presentation about Michael Jackson - it offends me. Should that not be allowed either?



Quoting paknari:

Although I am Christian and I think that God is a great idol, I can see why the girl wasn't allowed to write a paper about it in school. There are a lot of crazy ass people out there that would sue if little tommy heard a paper that Was offensive.





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paknari
by on Sep. 14, 2013 at 12:39 PM
Unfortunately separation of Chechnya and state is just that. You are not supposed to discuss your religion. I think the law is ridiculous and should never have happened but it was passed.


Quoting ablessedlife:

Quoting paknari:

Although I am Christian and I think that God is a great idol, I can see why the girl wasn't allowed to write a paper about it in school. There are a lot of crazy ass people out there that would sue if little tommy heard a paper that Was offensive.

No. Even in school, especially in school, students are (should be) allowed to share their opinions and beliefs. Students need to hear that others might believe differently than you do. If the teacher doesn't want to have that in her class, then she shouldn't assign something like writing "about your idol." Choose a different topic then. Choose one that is less evoking. (But evoking is good, in my opinion, especially if the children are a bit older.)

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Maridel
by on Sep. 14, 2013 at 12:53 PM
3 moms liked this

Yes Aphrodite should have been just as acceptable, God, Jesus, Allah, just as any Pagan diety for a Pagan child should be acceptable too. 

Religious beliefs should not be TAUGHT in public school! Yes I would be outraged if my child came home from school saying the teacher told her God doesn't exist and that some other god was the only real god. That is not a teacher's place. But what children learn from each other is completely different. Religion will be in public school because it is a part of who that child is! Chirstianity is a part of a Christian child and it will be with them everywhere they go! And when you send your child into the world they are going to be exposed to all different religious beliefs. You can't shield them from that. Not even as homeschoolers can we shield our children from the world. My child comes home telling me the neighbor kid is Muslim and believes differently than we do, I'm not going to jump up and down and have a fit and tell this kid's mother they can't talk about such things. I'm going to take the opportunity to keep communication open with my child and teach her that not everyone believes the same as we do, and that's okay. That's how you teach tolerance and accepting people for who they are.

What gets me most about the article is how Christians are constantly being accused of being intolerant. But other religions and atheists are just as intolerant of Christians. It seems they think religious freedom in our country means they don't have to hear about religion EVER. That's not what this country was founded on! Religious freedom in our country means we are welcome to believe what we want and be able to worship FREELY and OPENLY. The settlers came from other countries where they were having to worship in secret for fear of being persecuted. Now non-Christians in this country are asking us to "keep it to ourselves". What now we have to go back and worship in secret?? Teach our kids are religion is something to be ashamed of and can't be talked about when they are out in public?! That's not religious freedom!!  The same way we can't tell a Muslim not to wear their Hijab because our kids would ask too many questions. Or Jewish child be told she can't draw a picture of a menorah around Christmas time if the school assignment was to draw what they will be doing during the holidays. That's just intolerance!


Quoting Mandallyn:

I don't understand how I'm forcing my ideal on anyone.

Yes, children should look up to humans that made a difference, whether its volunteer work at a local animal shelter, or someone who helped propel change across a nation.  If it had been a paper about how her idol was Aphrodite would that be acceptable?  

Religios belief does not belong in public school.  Period.  There are far too many other religions for one to be acceptable, and not all others.   I'm not against teaching about various religions and the cultures that surround them, merely the belief that any religious faith belongs in public school.


Quoting AutymsMommy:


I don't understand this at all.

You're forcing your ideal that a child SHOULD look up to someone who has made a great impact on society. What if Susie looks up to her mother? Still not acceptable? I mean, mom will never move mountains.

The paper wouldn't require grading on "religious beliefs" - assuming she wrote the assignment as per the instructions, the teacher would be grading the writing, not the content necessarily.

Quoting Mandallyn:

I don't think that's appropriate for school. I would be outraged if my son came home saying he'd learned about god in public school. I do think children should be pushed to learn more about human rights activists who have managed to make great change in their societies, no matter if that person is a religious figurehead or not. It's people who make change in our physical world, the spiritual should be something left for parents to teach at home. Even if only the teacher was reading it, I still believe it's not appropriate for a public school.  Asking a teacher to grade an essay on a student's religous beliefs irks me deeply. The child's faith only matters to her personally. Her faith will not make the world bend to accommodate her.






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