The contest started with the lower levels of English ability bravely powering through their well-written speeches. The general theme of internationalism and human nature pushed student’s understanding of the world around them to its limit. The most successful performances were from the students who mixed research with personal experience, and the audience responded well the feelings being spoken about. A highly successful contest ended with four well deserved winners and many happy memories for the participants.
My parents are liars. And I know that every parent existing is a liar too. Have your parents ever lied to you or told you that if you swallowed watermelon seeds, a watermelon will grow inside you? Or, if you eat after you’ve brushed your teeth, you would be taken to jail? I guess every one of you has been told some kind of “white lie” like this. Santa Claus, also known as Saint Nicholas is one of the most famous white lies. The existence of Santa is told all over the world, starting from European countries such as the Netherlands, the U.K., Italy and France, and even in Asian countries like China and Japan. Now, are these lies okay? Should parents tell these white lies to their children? The answer depends on what type of lie you tell. Lies to give joy and excitement to children, like Santa Claus, are good and not harmful, but lies to control and get children to behave, such as the watermelon seeds and the jail one, are inappropriate and should be avoided.
First, the “good” white lies, like Santa, not only give joy and excitement to children but improve the child’s imagination and help the child to become a creative person. In western, and western influenced culture, when a child loses one of their teeth, they place the tooth under their pillow, and the tooth fairy will come while they are asleep, and replace the tooth with a coin. This imaginary fairy is a very good example of a “good” white lie. The irritation of the wobbly tooth and the uncomfortable feeling must be a lot of stress for a little child. But once the tooth has fallen out, an exciting night and a coin are waiting for you. The excitement and the little coin should be enough to be a reward for going through such a stressful period.
Now, how can this tooth fairy expand imagination? When I was 5 or 6, my friend who is one year older than me and had already once experienced the tooth falling out event, showed me a letter. A letter which she said she received from the tooth fairy. She told me, with her sparkling eyes, the handwriting of the letter was not even close to her parent’s and proved to me that the letter was truly from the tooth fairy. She told me her story about the tooth fairy from her spectacular imagination and her story was as detailed and exciting as any other book I had read at that age. She in particular was a very creative person, and not everybody can come up with such an exciting story. But, all children have immeasurable imagination power hidden inside, and it is the adults’ job to drag them out.
Now, this “imagination” can work in a totally contrasting way. For an example, when a boy is appealing to his mother to buy him a toy, the mother may want the child to learn to self-control and be patient, so she tells the boy that their family does not have the money to afford the toy, even if they do have money. This may sound like nothing at first. It might rather seem like a good thing. But what if the boy took this too seriously? When the boy finds something he wants to do, or a school he wants to go, he might think that his parents would not be able to afford it and give up. This may crush his possibilities and control any adventurous spirit and curiosity. Even if it is not so serious for adults, it may be very important for children and invite fear and anxiety. These lies are the “bad” white lies that I was talking about earlier. A child may fear that a watermelon will grow inside them, so they might never eat watermelon, or a child may fear too much just by eating after brushing their teeth. Children’s imagination can turn any random lie into a large trauma.
White lies are considered to be good of course, that’s why they are called “white”. But, thinking that it is more interesting and fun to tell white lies and lying too much with ease, there is a possibility that children will suffer unexpected adverse effects. Just because they are children, if you rely on white lies without telling the truth firmly, children might take it too seriously. It is important to think before you tell children, if the lie is just for fun and excitement, or to suppress the child’s behavior.