The ‘Band-Aid’ Lesson

Imagine seeing your doctor for a specific ailment and he prescribes you with an ointment. It wasn’t the treatment you expected, but you oblige. The next time, you have a different ailment but are given the same treatment as before. On your third visit, you thoroughly explain the problem and leave grudgingly with another prescription for the same ointment. At that point, you begin looking for a different doctor, one who will listen to your needs and supply an appropriate treatment. 

At the beginning of the school year, I began each class with a “Band-Aid” lesson. Students stepped into my “office” with an ailment, from broken bones, to headaches, to stomach pain. Each patient received a Band-Aid in response to his or her ailment. The students were in hysterics while I acted as if my treatments were perfectly normal. “We don’t need the same things!” they sternly declared, to which I defensively responded, “I am giving each patient the same thing; that’s equal! I thought you all wanted to be treated equally?” As a class, we concluded that each person has specific needs and fair doesn’t always mean equal. You would expect your doctor to treat your condition in response to your needs; likewise, teachers have varied responsesto students’ educational needs. When a student protests that a peer received a different expectation to an assignment, I gently respond, “I am not a ‘Band-Aid’ teacher.”

Our students’ needs are not always academic or even obvious. Students can have a range of needs: academic,physical, emotional, social, and spiritual. They are multi-faceted, beautiful, and unique. In the book The Great Didactic by M. W. Keatinge is a quote from Gregory Nazianzen which states, “To educate man is the art of arts, for he is the most complex and the most mysterious of all creatures.” Teaching well is not a “one size fits all” mentality. Fortunately, at Providence School, we can shepherd hearts and minds, with emphasis on the spiritual needs. We pray the Lord will use us to demonstrate His love, grace, and patience with our students. 

​Psalm 139 describes the intimate relationship between the Lord and man; the Lord knows his children. He knows your needs, ailments, strengths, abilities, disabilities, and desires. Godknows them intricately, whether they are obvious to you or not, “…for your father knows what you need before you ask him.”(Matthew 6:8).

Have you allowed your self-reliance and independence to become your “doctor?” Are you prescribing yourself the same treatment over and over, only to be met with the same results? Maybe it is time to find a new doctor, the ultimate healer, provider, and comforter, The Lord Almighty.

April Shay,
Student Support | Grammar & Composition
Providence School of Tifton
ashay@providencetift.com

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