Thursday, October 30, 2014

Some Hard to Believe Truths About the Children Who Occupied the First and Last Benches in Schools!

Today morning a cousin shared a truth that he or some one else like him might have experienced in life through the latest real time messaging application now familiar to all as WhatsApp : The message read like this:

"First bench doing job and last bench doing business. Truth of school life. A first bench student knows the answer to every question (problem), but the last bench student knows how to face every problem!"

Yes, there are enough examples that you could find to prove that this is true.

I too am too tempted to agree with this statement wholly and wholeheartedly.

During my school days, I have been more-or-less one of the first type who sat on the first bench mostly always. We were the so-called class toppers who were the pampered best students of the teachers. We were often the role models our teachers pointed to our not-so-fortunate back bench sitters. We hardly got an opportunity to notice the faces of those sat behind us in the back benches. The last bench ones were not the favorites of the teachers, but they were no doubt our heroes! Because, they were good at many things that we could hardly think of accomplishing in those days, other than perhaps scoring the marks in the test papers.

Rose Garden in a Private Suburban Indian School Campus!
Thrust Mainly towards Screening High Scoring First Bench Sitters and
Weeding Out the Low Performing Last Bench Sitters!

Perhaps, that could be one reason that I tried to change my image during my senior days with a bit success. In fact that helped me to experience the advantages of both to some extent!

But being nurtured for the first bench, I was bound to become a servant or naukar doing service or naukari and I became an accomplished naukar among the vast group of such naukars all around. But with my bits and pieces of last bench experiences, I could no doubt notice the poor slavish state of minds that my colleagues mostly possessed with little scope for trying out any new things even if it could make their own lives much better.

They were not trained to face challenges. They have been trained to follow the established legacy of work culture as per instructions only! Most of our bosses too were not much different, because they too were only naukars with a little bit more accomplishments than the rest of us!

Many of us, during the course of our naukari acted the double role of dogs and gods! We understood nothing more than that, to be very frank. We kept remembering our school teachers and our over ambitious parents who either patted or scolded us for keeping us the disciplined children who never ever ventured to question the established ways of knowledge and culture.

In India, our colonial masters needed literate servants in limited numbers and hence the schools that produced such servants were much less in number during the formative years of young nation. But later, the demand rose and we created more and more such schools and educational institutions that continued with the same methodology of teaching and training!

So we had only teaching and training institutions catering only those in the front benches. We cared little for the back and last bench ones. But fortunately, among them were the ones who did not need any formal teaching and training. Among them were the few borne leaders who mastered the skills to face problems instead of selecting stereotyped answers to problems!

I had been an admirer of those who sat in the back benches. Some of them could turn their initial misfortunes to great fortunes in later years. How can I forget the back bench heroes of our times?

Dhirubai Ambani, Bill Gates, Jack Ma etc lead the long list. On the other hand, we the disciplined and well liked ones who occupied the first benches kept doing our servant roles receiving the ten chakrams of Padmanabhadasa. 

I am not telling that servants like us are not required. We are indeed the work force who are doing the jobs. All kinds of jobs!

But regrettably, we are more in numbers than the job opportunities for us to act. We do not know how to create jobs. We only know how to do the jobs that are demanded from us. When we are in great numbers than the job opportunities, the demand for us goes down and as a result our value too!

So those of us of the first bench sitters either struggle to get jobs or struggle to get more value for our jobs.

But the few who sat behind us face our problems differently in a way that we never understood in the beginning until they told us the details. And we find them making value and wealth in such a manner we never could understand well.

So they keep staying as our heroes. We envy them  and secretly tell all bad things about them out of our envies.

But we need more of them for us to think and act differently. We need more of them to lead us. Without them we cannot do our service! We need them to tell us what to do! They are our entrepreneurs and business men. They are the job creators. They are the ones who find ways of creating wealth and enabling us to work! We need them in right proportions among us. Those naturally getting developed by sitting in the back benches are not enough. We really need more of them.

But how can we possibly make more of them? Can any of us of us of the first bench type be made to be like them? What should we do in our schools?

Any ideas ?

1 comment:

  1. so called first benchers are always under pressure to b in limelight. they will do everything from being a good studious student to a butter platters..Last benchers are least cared for all these. in fact they r nor at all in any type of pressure for a survival. but that doesn't mean they are losers. they are not in pressure to please anyone in institution but only themselves.they r freebirds .... free to think different ...n free from expectations.whatever they do.. they do for themself.which first benchers lack...

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