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What to do when your 6 year old draws a swastika on the classroom whiteboard?

(44 Posts)
nevergoogle Mon 26-Sep-11 20:54:13

DS1 announced at bedtime that today he got to draw on the classroom whiteboard, but when he drew Hitler's flag the teacher told him to wipe it off immediately.

Now I know, he knows about Hitler after he appeared on Dr Who and that we discussed that he was bad because he didn't like people who had different skin colours or religions etc. He gets that Hitler is not good. He knows what a Nazi is. But he didn't realise it's not a good sign to draw.

But WTF did the teacher think was going on?

So what do we do now? Should we talk to the teacher? Apologise? Explain? Ignore? or curl up in a ball of embarrassment? or maybe even ignore.

I've got that sinking feeling. Blardy child.


for clarity - i am not a nazi. smile

BelleEnd Mon 26-Sep-11 20:55:06

I blame the parents! wink

ThePathanKhansWoman Mon 26-Sep-11 20:59:16

Maybe your DS knows that the swastika was and is used in the Hindu (i think) religion, he's just smart is all wink.

Someone smart will be along to explain origins of swastika in a minute.

tethersend Mon 26-Sep-11 20:59:23

Tell the teacher he was halfway through drawing a window?

TBH, the teacher shouldn't have reacted like that. She should have talked to him about it, and ascertained his understanding of it rather than told him to wipe it off.

Good springboard for class discussion if you ask me.

nevergoogle Mon 26-Sep-11 21:00:46

<whimper> this boy keeps us on our toes alright.

i'd home educate if i didn't think it was clear that i'm not explaining myself very well to him.

snigger Mon 26-Sep-11 21:05:37

Explain to the teacher that during your extensive supper time rambles through multiculturalism and its impact on modern society, your DS was impressed by the concept of reclaiming the original Sanskrit auspicious origin of the symbol and felt this aspect should be celebrated?

Do you think he could memorise that?

Jux Mon 26-Sep-11 21:06:34

Silly of the teacher. Excellent opportunity for discourse, either of its origins or of its nazi connotations. Silly. Silly again. Go in and tell her how silly she is.

nevergoogle Mon 26-Sep-11 21:09:51

march hmm in there and tell her she's silly and that my son should be able to draw swastika's anywhere he likes.

i like you're ideas snigger, but i don't think he could carry it off.

ChippingIn Mon 26-Sep-11 21:13:18

nevergoogle - I like the way he keeps us entertained but I'm very glad I don't live with him the teacher needs to take the stick out of her arse the time to ask who knows what it is etc & use it to talk about how wrong discrimination is, not react like a child herself this.

LizzieMo Mon 26-Sep-11 21:13:57

The swastika also featured alot in Roman mosaics- sometimes it was a pattern around the border. Perhaps you should tell the teacher you had been learning about the Romans................Might work???

snigger Mon 26-Sep-11 21:16:00

Have you considered sending the teacher a note asking if she's ever googled.......


Could divert the debate?

nevergoogle Mon 26-Sep-11 21:17:55

of course I can't be sure what she said, or how she handled it. but he said she told him to wipe it off. he told DH while saying goodnight and talking about his day. i'll ask him a bit more tomorrow. then we'll have to talk about the spanish inquisition...

yes chipping in, be very grateful. life is never dull with him though.

nevergoogle Mon 26-Sep-11 21:19:01

i do mosaics. i don't want her thinking i only do swastikas. even hindu ones.

ThePathanKhansWoman Mon 26-Sep-11 21:20:25

grin @ nevergoogle, the one track mosaicer!

MmeLindor. Mon 26-Sep-11 21:21:28

Hmm, I do think that the teacher was right in not discussing who Hitler was, and what the Nazis did.

I would not be at all chuffed if my children were taught about this at age 6yo.

Go in and have a word with the teacher and explain what you said here.

ohanotherone Mon 26-Sep-11 21:21:57

I think it was pretty common in my day to draw swasika's and no one accused anyone of being a Nazi. FFS

nevergoogle Mon 26-Sep-11 21:24:50

yes, i've tried to give him an age appropriate explanation. a sanitised version.

slartybartfast Mon 26-Sep-11 21:27:07

when i was at school a boy had a HUGE swastika on his school book and the history teacher went apeshit, he was furious, said it was illegal..

nevergoogle Mon 26-Sep-11 21:28:46

you may not be surprised, but i can feel a headache coming on. any bloody wonder. i'm going to have to switch off for now.
i'll be back tomorrow.

thanks for not flaming.

akaemmafrost Mon 26-Sep-11 21:29:43

I would talk to the teacher, explain the context, ie doctor who etc.

When I was at school <<many moons ago>> someone carved one onto one of the desks in the metal work room. The teacher (an elderly man) went absolutely nuts and was almost in tears and gave a massive lecture about WW2 and how he had been in it and lost many friends. It was awful actually and has stayed with me since all those years ago sad

snigger Mon 26-Sep-11 21:34:06

Do you know what? If the teacher's worth her salt, she's probably sitting at home just now thinking "Hell, I hope the Nevergoogles don't think I overreacted on that one, it's obvious they're not Neo-Nazis, the kid's six, I should have done some subtle questioning....."

Either that or she did do the subtle questioning, understands entirely, and DS is painting this in the worst possible light, as children do.

Personally, I'd ignore it. It beats the time DD2 told her teacher she once heard DH & I 'mating'. Worse things happen at sea, and all that. Chin up.

jetgirl Mon 26-Sep-11 21:35:56

Interesting one. Last week I had to phone a parent as her son had drawn swastikas on the table during my history lesson. He's in year 9. My faculty leader and I spoke to him in school about it, and he fessed up to his mum as soon as he got home, before I had even phoned. He was being a silly little boy, not thinking about what he was doing and didn't consider the offensiveness of the symbols he drew and other things he had written. His mother was mortified and the situation has been dealt with in a calm, rational manner. It wasn't only the swastikas on the desk, mind you, there were comments about the holocaust which many would have found offensive.

solidgoldbrass Mon 26-Sep-11 21:42:27

To a kid of that age, given the context in which he became aware of the symbol, it's a bit like drawing a Dalek flag - he gets that Hitler is a baddie but may not entirely understand that while Hitler-as-portrayed-in-Dr-Who is a cartoon baddie, there was a real Hitler who did terrible things. (I have a just-turned-7 DS who also loves Dr Who and sometimes questions me about how much of it is 'real').

WhoseGotMyEyebrows Tue 27-Sep-11 12:45:03

Oh I feel quite sorry for him. I agree with solidgoldbrass

You don't need to apologise, although a chat wouldn't hurt.

AlpinePony Tue 27-Sep-11 12:51:04

I drew a swastika at around the same age and my mum went absolutely ballistic and tore my paper in to a million pieces. I didn't even know it was a swastika, I was just experimenting with "drawing shapes" - does that make sense?

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