My Peanut Butter and Mustard Theory: Student-Teacher Relationships

Peanut Butter is great on a sandwich.

ifoodtv.com

ifoodtv.com

Mustard is also great on a sandwich.

pennlive.com

pennlive.com

But on the same sandwich?

vimeo.com

vimeo.com

Ick.

Not a good combination.

In my years as a teacher, consultant, and mother, I’ve discovered that teacher-student relationships are very much like sandwiches…

Sometimes, we have peanut butter and jelly years…The student’s personality fits well with the teacher’s temperament. They complement one another. The student thrives, and the teacher shines. Meaningful learning  takes place.

amazon.com

amazon.com

And sometimes, we have peanut butter and mustard years…The student and the teacher, both fine, worthy people, each with unique talents and interests, just don’t make a great pairing. Learning still happens, but it’s not as palatable or pleasant.

blog.smithsonianmag.com

blog.smithsonianmag.com

Those peanut butter and mustard years can be really hard…especially when some people you know are talking about how fabulous the teacher is, and what a great year their kids are having.

It’s also difficult when someone says, “OH…your child has Mrs. Jelly? That’s too bad. We had the WORST year with her…”

And then it’s a delightful surprise when Mrs. Jelly is just exactly what your little peanut needs…and you have a fabulous year.

Of course, there are those rare times when a combination can be toxic, and the sandwich needs to be quickly remade to prevent illness. Those times call for wisdom, discernment and proactive communication.

nydailynews.com

nydailynews.com

Usually, though, we can tolerate a peanut butter and mustard year, by focusing on what is good and fortifying, and just learning to swallow (or throw out) the rest.

It’s important to remember  that nothing is bad about either peanut butter OR mustard…It’s just that together, they’re  not a great combination. Peanut Butter and Mustard are both unique creations…valuable and versatile and worthy.

Wishing you lots of peanut butter and jelly years, along with the ability to swallow–and grow from–a bite of peanut butter and mustard now and then.

~Katie

emergencyfoodshelf.com

emergencyfoodshelf.com

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4 thoughts on “My Peanut Butter and Mustard Theory: Student-Teacher Relationships

  1. Great perspective! This will be a healthy, helpful way for my kids to understand about their relationship with their teachers both past and present ! Thx!

  2. Wonderful perspective, as always – but Katie – we had homemade bread with freshly ground peanut butter and the best strawberries freshly picked and quickly made into jam – when you were JD’s teacher – oh yes, there were mustard days – and a few pickle days, too – but oh that PBJ time was the very best! Love you!

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