I think that that a “moment of silence” would work as an option, but not if it’s “mandatory” (i.e. a law). If you called it “a moment of reflection” and not a “moment of prayer”, then I think this could be beneficial. Isn’t this what “recess” is all about?
Also, I’ve found that those who don’t take the opportunity to reflect are often the ones who need it the most.
“A federal judge has ruled unconstitutional a law passed by the Illinois legislature requiring the state’s schools to require a moment of prayer or reflection on the day’s activities.
U.S. District Judge Robert W. Gettleman ruled Wednesday the law crosses the line separating church and state under the Constitution. He says in his ruling that the statute is a “subtle effort” to force students at “impressionable ages” to think about religion.”
(via The Daily Herald)
January 22, 2009 at 12:46 am
not sure if i agree with this or not. It seems like judgments and then recurring workarounds are competing for press time.
It would be nice if we could all get along without the lawyers
January 22, 2009 at 12:48 am
to force students at “impressionable ages” to think
We wouldn’t want that.
January 24, 2009 at 6:14 am
Building plastic models increases eye-hand coordination and attention to printed instructions. Models can be used to teach history and science. So I’d like to propose that 1 minute of every English class be used to make plastic models. Maybe some helicopters, a little house, whatever.
All the good arguments for a moment of a moment of school not occuring in school are about as good as my argument for making models in English class. Yes, good things can happen in that optional, oh sweet Jesus we aren’t calling it prayer, it’s really really really not prayer. But it is a waste of time. Students given a minute to hang out would be more beneficial. But that occurs anyway, and plenty of it. Class time? I say use it for class.
– Trevor the Professional Educator that is Educating Your Children Right Now.
January 24, 2009 at 9:51 pm
Those of who don’t pray know exactly what people mean by “moment of reflection” or “moment of silence.” It’s like a “holiday tree”- fundamentally dishonest without fooling anyone who doesn’t choose to be fooled.
We’re not fooled by “optional” either. No one could force me to say the pledge in school, but they could sure single me out and create drama and social pressure. (The fact that I thrived on such drama doesn’t help the kids who don’t.)
If kids want to pray in school, they’ve got lots of opportunity to do it on their own- before class, during lunch, or while ignoring their math teacher who doesn’t make any sense anyway.