How do children see gay people in modern society? Children have always proved they are the most adaptable humans, so homosexuality shouldn’t be an issue for them, but not always…
I don’t normally talk about sexuality in my classes, as being a language teacher is not the best topic to use. However; the subject sometimes comes out.
This time, I was asking my students about the TV shows they like and which ones they’d seen on the previous weekend, and a girl told us she saw Modern Family.
My 10-year-old student, Tommy, doesn’t really care about interrupting, and he’s still in that period in which he couldn’t care less what the people think, so he just spit whatever he thinks.
And little Tommy spat this: “There are to gays!” referring to the gay couple that appear on the show.
As a teacher, I try not to emphasize certain issues in the class by ignoring them, so I tried not to give importance to this, and I just asked him “but what’s the problem Tommy?” to which Tommy replied that being gay is anti-natural.
Get your hands dirty
As a teacher, I’m obliged to do something when needed, so I opted to change the issue by asking them -involving the whole class now- if they cared about someone with blonde hair.
Nobody seemed to dislike blondes, so I just told them that being gay was something similar, it is an option that exists that shouldn’t affect anyone, not even surprise anyone.
And something as easy as letting him know it was not his problem was a first step to integration, but the question is, why did Tommy say something like that?
Ten year old Tommy is a very good boy. He gets easily distracted and talks too much in the class, which is the normal stuff 10 year olds normally do. The fact that he came out with that comment makes me think he heard the sentence from somebody else.
I have no idea, but this really sounds like his father’s comment, or maybe any other person near him. What really worries me is that the comment could even be made as a joke, as we normally mock at everything in Spain.
But the problem is that Tommy cannot discern sarcasm, and believed it as a true story. But I’m just supposing.
Adults can have any opinion about anything, and everyone else must respect that. If someone thinks being gay is anti-natural, well who am I to argue? I can disagree, that’s all.
But children should be protected from our adult opinions, and they should never get a conclusion. Children must receive all the possibilities so they can forge their own opinion when they’re mature enough.