4. To restore the use of lines and work orders.
Surely writing lines has no educational value whatsoever? It's mind-numbing. No! Lines have fallen
into disuse because of claims like this and suggestions that it might hurt the hand of the offender. About 50 lines will not
do any damage. The reason that lines work is that the message gets through because it is repeated. Repetition
gets through to the brain.
Let us say Liam has to copy 50 times:
<I am selfish when I talk
in Mrs Smith's lesson and I am depriving others of their right to learn. >
It might be boring to have to copy this,
but has the message got through? Maybe not. If during that week he receives two further sets of lines and the penalty is the
same for each: 50 lines
<I am selfish when I talk in Mr Jones' lesson and I am depriving others of
their right to learn. >
<I am selfish when I talk in Mrs Harper's lesson and I am depriving others of their
right to learn. >
The task is not enjoyable and therefore Liam will definitely think twice next time but he is
also likely to think about the message. Am I selfish? Am I depriving others? Tests have shown that writing lines is more effective
that detention, especially if the lines must be done at home and signed by a parent. Children absolutely hate doing lines
but many don't really mind detention even if that detention includes a writing task.
It is well known that
if the hand is underused, it will cause pain. However, the muscles do become stronger if they are used more regularly, as
many violinists will testify. If most school children are writing regularly, (as they should be), then copying lines
for half an hour is extremely unlikely to do any harm.
Another effective deterrent is to give children and teenagers work orders, such as picking up litter, cleaning
corridors, classrooms and toilets. Schools might even be able to save money on their cleaning bill.