The challenge that this student gave me was to reconcile the fact that one can be positive and well meaning but that that doesn’t mean that the world will reciprocate. The entire semester I had been showing my students what the research tells us about the effects of positive emotions and notions of values education, restorative practices and community service. Now this student pointed out a possible flaw in my rationale for teaching this to beginning educators, and arguing, as I do, that perhaps we need to be aware of these dimensions in order to increase the general wellbeing of students. If the whole world is not nice, perhaps we can indeed set children up for much disappointment and even assist in the development of a type of ‘naive happiness’ that some are warning against?
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|Published - 2011