Tolerance, diversity starts at young age

Published 12:00 am Friday, December 16, 2005

Young minds are the most impressionable, so it is vital that modern educators find the correct way to make the right impressions on the youth of today who will become the leaders of tomorrow.

For students in four of Lawrence County schools’ talented and gifted program that culminated Wednesday with a border-spanning presentation of education and diplomacy affectionately known as Model United Nations summit. This type of education focuses as much on personal interaction and communication as it does textbooks.

Seventh- and eighth-grade students from Chesapeake, Fairland, Rock Hill and South Point came to battle it out as a country of their choice in an emulation of the world’s forum. Each district chose three different countries to research, represent and work to benefit.

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In addition to learning about countries much different from our own such as Mozambique and Brazil, the students had a chance to learn about government and diplomacy. Though it may be on a much smaller scale, the students saw first-hand what this can mean to individual countries and the entire world.

This culmination of learning could be the spark that ignites an inferno of political interest. Our next great national or world leader could have been introduced to the world of politics today.

Long after the statistics and facts gleamed from textbooks have faded, these students likely will still retain the most important lessons they learned today: Cooperation, communication and compromise.

All these will likely serve them well throughout their high school days and into adulthood.

Truly, that is all any of us can ask of our educators. To try and teach children lessons that will stick with them once the classrooms are but memories.

Those are impressions that can never be imitated.