Yesterday in my kindergarten class here in China, we were discussing the weather. We came to the conclusion that it was both sunny AND cold, but with space for only one weather card, we had to choose which one to post on the calendar. So I took a vote—1 kid voted for sunny, the other three voted for cold.
The student (we will call him Lin) who lost the vote asked me why the other three should get their way. I told him it was a situation of “majority rules”. “But what if I’m right?” he persisted. I told him that the majority always wins in my class.
Lin was not convinced and I could see his point.
I don’t know if pulling the “majority rules” argument is a common classroom management strategy in China—but I’m guessing it’s not. Just because we learn something as a core tenet of our social value structure in the West does not make it applicable everywhere.
But then again, this country is communist which implies that the people’s will is the way of the government—but I’m pretty sure that’s not really true, no more than the US Congress represents the majority of the people in the US.
So really, both governments are run by people who are not representative of the general populace but who achieved positions of power because they are in some way better at some things than the general populace. We might even conclude they are smarter than the general populace.
Though Lin was not happy with the majority rule decision, he finally caved after I threatened to take away his recess.
My class, my rules.