to say something to the teacher or is it not worth following up?

(129 Posts)
saffronwblue Fri 16-Nov-12 03:30:38

DD, 10 goes to an all girls school. Lots of good talk in all the school literature about how girls and women can do anything etc.
DD came home from school yesterday describing the sports lesson in which the (male) teacher made a big point of telling them not to "throw the ball like girls". With lots of demonstrations and laughter about weak girl throwing.
As a feminist I am not thrilled about this linking of weak and laughable with being a girl. Should I have a quick word with him or am I being boring and humourless? I never know when to speak up!

PixieHot Fri 16-Nov-12 07:46:26

grin Tee.

I was measured in my response though, as I think the majority of posters in Feminism also would be.

borninnotts Fri 16-Nov-12 07:48:05

Oh please please please do complain to the school - men in white coats would come a running...... What on earth are we coming to when an off the mark comment upsets a child/parent when it is used daily - dd & throw like "girls" - so bloody what. Seriously thinking about leaving mn if this is the pathetic thing some parents whinge about...... Go find a real problem.......

exoticfruits Fri 16-Nov-12 07:49:41

Not worth following up. They all laughed because they have seen examples. I could never throw over arm- still can't.

Tee2072 Fri 16-Nov-12 07:53:14

Perhaps the majority, Pixie, but not the very vocal minority!

Agree with Borninnotts. Not everything is a political/social/feminist/insert whatever here issue. Sometimes a phrase is just a phrase.

exoticfruits Fri 16-Nov-12 07:54:11

I do think it sad when everyone has to watch their words in case they upset people!
I can also tell you, having taught many classes, that if you were to line up a class - get them all to have one throw and divide them into 2 groups according to results- the good throwers would have far more boys. (Not that you would do it- but I could bet money on it)

Tee2072 Fri 16-Nov-12 07:54:33

"I think that challenging sexist micro-behaviours is key to working towards sexual equality. A lot of people (men, women, and children) display sexist micro-behaviours which should be challenged in order to encourage self-examination and discussion. I think that low level, ubiquitous sexism like this allows more blatant sexism to persist. "

Isn't it exhausting to be on high alert for offence all the time?

exoticfruits Fri 16-Nov-12 07:56:37

I think a sense of humour is far pleasanter to live with! (And more relaxing)

borninnotts Fri 16-Nov-12 07:56:56

Im all for female rights & had he said "you cant throw cause youre a girl" you may have a point but he didnt. I so feel sorry for teachers & the like having parents breath down their necks for every single word they say, poor man :-(

PixieHot Fri 16-Nov-12 08:04:41

It doesn't feel like that though Tee. I have a set of core beliefs, and I notice if anything happens that is contradictory to those beliefs. I know that you have to choose your battles, but (for me) I believe that this is one of them.

"Girls can throw equally as hard as men IF they are taught how and given the chance to practice".

No, they cant. We cannot throw equally as hard as men generally because we lack the physical strength.

Now if you're saying that girls at school can be taught to throw as hard as weedy, just past pubescent boys who haven't built their upper bodies up, the yes grin

But in generals girls can't throw as far as 'men'.

Tee2072 Fri 16-Nov-12 08:14:02

I guess, Pixie, I would find it exhausting to keep those core beliefs in my head all the time, ready to be offended when they are pushed against.

Not that I don't have any beliefs (and I am actually a feminist, BTW) I just don't worry about them in my day to day interactions with the world on a superficial level.

And I think this one comment was very superficial.

BelleDameSousMistletoe Fri 16-Nov-12 08:24:10

He's using "like a girl" to mean "in the wrong way". It implies that "girls" (all of them) cannot throw and thus to get it right they need to not do it like a girl.

It's a typical example of the constant belittling of women and girls as "lesser" and that is why it is unacceptable. If the teacher can't understand that he shouldn't be teaching either sex. IMrantyO.

seeker Fri 16-Nov-12 08:26:04

I have a set of core beliefs, too- and I don't have any trouble keeping to them in my daily life.

However, girls need to be challenged when they do the "Oh, I'm so pathetic- look at me being all girly and cute"

Which, believe me, girls do in PE lessons from very early in their school careers. And there is a particular way of throwing, kicking and running that is exclusive to girls who have this mind set. And teachers, even PE teachers, collude with them in this. I am, actually,delighted that this teacher isn't letting them get away with it.

seeker Fri 16-Nov-12 08:27:27

I would be posting a very different answer if he had said this to a mixed or all boy group.

BelleDameSousMistletoe Fri 16-Nov-12 08:27:30

But surely he can find a better way to express it?!

seeker Fri 16-Nov-12 08:30:51

Well, he probably could have found a better way to express it, but it would take a paragraph!

borninnotts Fri 16-Nov-12 08:36:47

Really...... Poor pe teacher lol..... Lambasted for a joke-stating the truth. Surely there are more pressing matters toworry ones pretty little head over (joke) :-)

diavlo Fri 16-Nov-12 08:39:54

Seriously? I think you need to get a bit of a grip to be honest.

Tee2072 Fri 16-Nov-12 08:40:18

My problem with 'he could have found a better way to express it' implies that calling anything 'like a girl' or 'girlie' is wrong. That just by using the phrase he's implying that girls are inferior.

And, actually, in this case they usually are, but not my point. My point is that I don't understand feminists who don't like being called girlie or girls. Yes, yes, you're not girls, you're women.

And girls. If you want equality, for real, then you have to accept it everywhere. I have never heard a man objecting to being called a boy. So why can't I be called a girl? I am a girl. I have girl parts and everything!

So who says 'throwing like a girl' is a negative all the time? I'd bet everyone of them threw like girls...

seeker Fri 16-Nov-12 08:42:00

Whatnon earth are you talking about, Tee? Have you actually read the thread?

Tee2072 Fri 16-Nov-12 08:45:34

I've been involved with the discussion from the beginning, so yes. Am I typing invisibly?

I'm talking about the phrase 'throwing like a girl' being automatically assumed to be a negative thing because it has the word girl in it. Maybe it's not. Who knows? I wasn't there to hear the tone of the teacher, were you?

Silly me, I thought you and I were agreeing about something for the first time ever Seeker.

In any event, this girl is heading to bed to rest because this girl is feeling like dog meat.

ihavenofuckingclue Fri 16-Nov-12 08:55:17

No, they cant. We cannot throw equally as hard as men generally because we lack the physical strength.

Absolute rubbish. Sorry but it is. Women can have much more upper body strength. The reason alot of women don't is the years of 'you don't want to get bulky' in relation to fitness. when the truth is women struggle to bulk up.
Girls PE is general shit. I was taught crap all at school about actually fitness.
I think the whole way we look at at fitness and health , especially womens, needs a shake up.

Anyway, off to the gym. Going spinning then weight lifting with a few of the local rugby league players. Some of whom I can lift more than. smile

OldMumsy Fri 16-Nov-12 08:56:53

Tee2072

Isn't it exhausting to be on high alert for offence all the time?

Quite, how do they keep the levels of outrage up?

exoticfruits Fri 16-Nov-12 09:16:49

Which, believe me, girls do in PE lessons from very early in their school careers. And there is a particular way of throwing, kicking and running that is exclusive to girls who have this mind set. And teachers, even PE teachers, collude with them in this. I am, actually,delighted that this teacher isn't letting them get away with it.

This is so, so true, even at 5 years. Any teacher will come across girls like it and it is good to challenge it. He was actually saying that there was no excuse and no need to do it! Therefore I can't see why he gets slated for it. There are girls in the class who know he was stating a fact, so I can't see why he needs to dress it up in a whole paragraph when his short cut stated it. He needs to change that mindset!

seeker Fri 16-Nov-12 09:17:19

Such vivid imaginations some people have...........

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