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The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark Essay

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The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark

Miss Brodie fails to be a good teacher because she teaches on her own accord, gives her students wrong impressions, and displays unprofessional behavior towards her staff and pupils.

As a schoolteacher in Edinburgh during the 1930’s there were many rules and regulations that teachers had to adhere to in order to successfully feed the minds of their young pupils. Schoolteachers had more of a responsibility during this period than today because school was the only source of information and education that people could receive. Due to this fact, the government set strict policies and curriculums (and still do) that teachers must follow so that students could grow up to become well round
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She chose to ignore these mandatory guidelines and pursued her own fashion and material when instructing her students. This is why Miss Jean Brodie fails to be a decent teacher.

Miss Jean Brodie is a very self-centered person who likes to talk about herself to her class. She mentions to her class on several occasions that she is in the prime of her life and that it is the best time of ones life. Although she states that ‘ones prime is when they are born’ , Miss Brodie contradicts this statement and leads her class to believe that life is no good until one reaches their prime, which is at her age. This is misleading for the students who are at a susceptible age. By giving this wrong impression her students are left to believe that they have nothing to look forward to until they reach Miss Brodie’s age.

Another example of how Miss Brodie gives her student the wrong impression was her repetitive attacks on Miss MacKay. It was obvious the two teachers did not like one another, which is bound to happen in any profession. However, advertising this dislike to her classroom only leads to problems. The first time that this occurs is when Miss Brodie was leading here class out to the elm tree for the ‘imaginary’ history lesson. On the way outside she stops her class in front of Miss MacKay’s office, points to a picture of the old Prime
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