A lesson from an Exam

Two children of 8th Grade. Two different places. The same experience. They learn different lessons.

Student A:
There was a state level science exam conducted at our school. And since there were no external monitors, the teachers were giving away the answers as well as the questions. I felt that it was wrong. I mean- don’t you think its cheating ? I refused to take down the answers and wrote down whatever I knew. I was feeling so happy and proud to have done the right thing. I raced home to tell my mom this. She heard me narrate the entire thing. She smiled and praised me for my honesty. But then she added ” So tomorrow when the results will be out, everyone you know would have scored more than you. The people who see these results will never know that the others had copied and you did not. You will be considered a poor performer. Do you think you did the right thing ?”

Student B:
There was a state level science exam conducted at our school. And since there were no external monitors, the teachers in all classes except ours were giving away the answers as well as the questions. I felt that it was wrong. I mean-Shouldn’t everyone be treated the same way ? I believed that this was wrong. Our entire class was angry with the teacher. After the exam, the teacher addressed the rather grumpy class. She smiled and started : “I know you all are angry with me for not sharing the answers. But these exams will be forgotten after a while and what remains with us are the values that we take forward. The other students may score 90 and above, but believe me, even if you score 50, that will be worth more than the 90 scored by the others.”

Both the students walked off with a lesson. Which one learnt the right thing and which one learnt the wrong is just a matter of opinion. And just like everything else, Opinions vary .

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