So my 9 year old has totally gotten into WWE wrestling and I am having a blast living vicariously through his experience. The story’s are fun but not too complicated and fall into the PG category. I grew up during the 1990s “Attitude Era” so when my son started seeing wrestling pop up on his YouTube feed I got a bit nervous. There were things going on in the 90s that were definitely not 9 year old appropriate and by todays standards are just outright misogynistic and bigoted. The modern WWE isn’t perfect but the matches are better, they treat the women far better, and for the most part they are in the tween wheel house.
There are dozens of larger than life characters but they break down into “good guys” (babyfaces or faces) and “bad guys” (heels). These characters switch roles frequently but some are just really good at being one or the other. The inspiration for this post is a Heel who goes by “The Miz”. I mean just look at this guy – he has a very punchable face.
That isn’t the point.
As a Heel, The Miz’s job is to get people to hate him. His job is to get the crowd to hate him so much that they will cheer (pop) when the good guy comes in and punches him in that very punchable face of his. If he is doing his job well the crowd will react with overwhelming boos right on cue. The Miz has a knack for working the crowd and after watching him a few months I noticed that he has a go-to catch phrase guaranteed to drive the crowd into a frenzy. Take a look…
I laugh EVERY TIME I hear this!
Because this was something that I have been taught in PD Sessions!!! Multiple Times!!!
I have seen variations on this in Teach like a Champion, Kagan, Harry Wong, etc…
A teacher should have a hand signal which is often just putting up one hand. Students should see the hand raised and put there hands in their laps and sit quietly to wait for instruction. It is called a “procedure” in by the enlightened seller of product – I mean professional development coach. The Miz is showing us what it really is though – a method of control that people and especially students HATE!
One of the biggest Heels in the WWE uses a common teaching technique to get the crowed to shower him with boos. This must be triggering a visceral response in the audience something along the lines of “He is acting like every overbearing and controlling teacher that ever denied me any shred of humanity by using their power and authority to tell me to shut up”. Honestly, The Miz is literally holding the microphone and using his privilege and authority to tell the crowd to shut up. He is tapping into a long held irritation at teachers that have denied those people a voice for 13 years of their lives and the audience turns that onto him.
It is freakin brilliant as a Heel move!
BUT – if this is a technique used by a prominent bad guy because he KNOWS people hate it… Do you all think we should be using it in education?