The Pearson BuzzThe Pearson Buzz
          A Forum for Passionate Student Writers


Cultural Differences

Do As the Romans Do
by Catherine


My English teacher has told us many times that she doesn’t like the students to call her “teacher” and she wants us to call her first name, but many of us still call her “teacher."

It makes her very frustrated.

I never called my teachers’ by first name in China because it is rude and I am expected to call them “teacher." “Teacher” is not only a respectful form of address for all of teachers but is also to address other respectable people.

If I dared to call my teacher’ by first name, I would be expelled immediately. Even in my home, I was not allowed to use my parents and elder sister’s name.

Once I called my elder sister’s name while we played together. My grandma became very angry. She didn’t scold me because I was very little at that time, but she gave my mother a scolding.

“Is this how you inculcate good manners in young children?” she asked.

After that, I’ve never called my sister’s by her first name, using only “sister.”

In this aspect, Canadian culture is so different to Chinese. People call each other by their first name and it is polite and friendly here.

If we don’t know this difference, our teacher would likely forgive us. But if she told us many times not to call her “teacher,” why couldn’t we change our mind and follow her wishes?

Do in Rome as the Romans do. Usually, it is the best way to show our respect