Dec 14, 2009, 3:38 PM
Writers Association of the Gambia (WAG) last Friday held their first ever public lecture at the Reform Club complex along MDI road in Kanifing. The lecturer was Mr. Alpha Khan, principal Charles Jow Memorial Academy School. The theme of his lecture was Discipline: "A holistic Virtue for Personal and National Development" based on the educational perspective of discipline.
Delivering his lecture before a group of prominent intellectuals, Mr. Khan said there are many virtues in life namely cleanliness, honesty, industriousness, loyalty, patience, and order. He stated that virtue can be referred to as goodness especially when speaking of someone's character.
He said discipline as a virtue like all other virtues has to be learned or acquired formally or informally in life, noting that learning discipline is usually difficult at first but become easier with practice overtime until it becomes part of a habit. Mr. Khan said the term discipline comes from the Latin word "disciplinare" meaning to teach. Many people, he added, associate the word with punishment, which he continued candidly falls short of the full meaning of the word.
According to him, discipline should be based on appropriate expectations for each child based on age and stage of development hence the supportive theory of going down to the level of the child to bring him/her up in all instances. He added that discipline as a virtue should be used to set reasonable limits in a consistent manner while still allowing some choice among acceptable alternatives.
Discipline, Khan went on, teaches both social and moral standards and should protect children from harm by teaching what is safe for them. Mr. Khan alluded that discipline should guide children to respect the rights and property of others. He noted that it is time to give consideration to guidelines for disciplining children.
The president of the (WAG) Nana Grey-Johnson in his brief welcoming address said this is the first time WAG is holding its first ever-public lecture since coming into office two months ago. He said there is a Christian prayer that says when two or three people are gathered together in your name, you will grant their request emerging where the WAG would be when they cerebrate their hundred years anniversary.
A salutation song and a poem tribute to Dr Lenry Peters were read by Ms. Aurelia Prom and Mrs. Matilda Johnson while the UTG drama group performed a sketch drama called "The writer".
Mr. Aloa Ahmed Alota, WAG publicity secretary introduced the lecturer. Mr. Cherno Omar Barry gave the vote of thanks on behalf of WAG members while Ebrima Baldeh of GRTS chaired the ceremony, which ended with question and answers.