Students pick up on adult behavior, and when that adult is famous, more students may end up modeling him or her.
Which is why New Jersey kindergarten teacher Cheryl Meyer used a town hall forum in Old Bridge, N.J., on Tuesday to ask Gov. Chris Christie about his well-known penchant for impolite language. According to the Associated Press:
Meyer, 45, told Christie that she'd had trouble explaining to her students why it was fine for the man who holds the highest office in the state to use words like 'shut up' and 'idiot' when they can't. 'How do you defend that?' she asked.
The AP reports that the governor offered a reflection on his language use. Christie said that he’s had occasions in the past where he wishes he had used different words, and sometimes he gave in to people who just wanted to goad him. Or he’ll have had a bad day. Or he’ll just want to use that language. It’s part of who he is, Christie added.
“I think we’ve had too much of people in public life pretending to be something,” he said.
According to Bloomberg News, Meyer offered the governor some free advice: "[T]one it down a little.”
Meyer will know her students are really in trouble once they start making questionable deals with ExxonMobil.
Image: New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie speaks at a town hall meeting at the Hanover Township Community Center, last March in Whippany, N.J. —Julio Cortez/A
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A version of this news article first appeared in the Teaching Now blog.