Friday night was my turn to cover detention. I had about seven boys and three girls. Since I’m the assistant dining hall head, we cleaned the dining hall first. Then we went to the labyrinth, the one I’ve been working on, on and off, for more than a year.
They helped me finish another ring around the outside. They helped clear some weeds and clarify a few sight lines. They stood with me as I explained the sunset-tracking functions of this Stone Age computer. And with a combination of work and study, they learned as much as you can learn about a labyrinth without building one yourself.
I’m not a big fan of punishment or discipline. I suppose there’s a need for it. But I hate that schools must be its enforcers. Last Sunday a group of students were rowdy in chapel, so my colleague marched them all out of the chapel, and then back in. It was … breathtaking in its damage to the spiritual life of this community.
I like to think my work project was constructive and useful to someone other than me.