High School Students -or- Teachers as Role Models

Sam 44, American Teacher

I have a recurring dream that a mistake was made and I am forced to go back to high school to gain some credits.  Since I graduated with honors in 1985 and I hated high school, this is distressing!  Anyway, I don't usually dream about actual classes, I dream that I am in band on the flag corps and on the football field during halftime.  I haven't been to band practice and I don't know the routines, but I am expected to perform anyway.  I am really frustrated and embarrassed that I don't know what is going on.  I was in band, by the way, and I was in the flag corps.  While I hated high school, I did enjoy band and performing.

Mr Hagen's Reply; Learning from Your Mistakes -or- To Sir with Love

Interestingly although you hated high school you became a teacher! As a teacher yourself, I believe that your dream is a message to you about role playing. Namely, that you have forgotten how it feels like to be a student, to play that role. Perhaps the dream is also saying that you have some unresolved issues from high school yourself. Much like in your dreams, many students feel forced to go to school and therefore are a captive audience. Many in fact just skip classes or drop out. Adolescents much like in your dream have performance anxieties, feel frustrated, feel embarrassment. You state in your dream, that "I don't know what is going on", most likely meaning you are confused, which cause the aforementioned feelings. As a teacher you need to let students know that you can identify, feel empathy and that you understand. The quintessential question is; what is your role as a teacher?

Disclosing to your students that you hated school is not a shame, we all have our likes and dislikes. You could also disclose, that you were interested and enjoyed some of the high school's performance activities. You can reinforce that everyone can learn from their mistakes. You can also reinforce that all students should have hopes and dreams. You could even have a class or two that they could discuss their dreams. Is nature's gift to humanity, the ability to dream taught in our schools? Is the art of dreaming a high school course...anywhere? Without real role models to show today's youth the way, how else will kids learn to perform and find their way in a oft time confusing adult world? Your dream serves as a reminder about the role play learning thinking, feeling and real life situations adolescents find themselves in.

Play, Dreams and Imitation -or- Philosophical Wisdom of the Dream

The fact that this dream is recurring indicates that it is your own form of Groundhog Day. Your dream also serves as a systemic message to all School Boards and teachers, even parents who may have lost touch with the philosophical needs of students and youth. I believe that there is a social systemic failure to understand that many adolescents are confused about life. The wisdom of the dream provides an innate psychodramatic guide to help find the philosophical way. The North American educational system has used many of the observations and theories of the cognitive psychologist Jean Piaget. Piaget's book Play, Dreams and Imitation about dreams have gone almost completely unutilized from an educational perspective.

From a popular culture perspective, while somewhat dated the film To Sir with Love (video) shows us the perennial dramatic learning difficulties of both teacher and student. The signature song by the same name of the film, was sung by Lulu (music video).


All material Copyright 2006 International Institute for Dream Research. All rights reserved.