Yesterday I attended a session about diversity, equity and inclusion sponsored by my provincial teachers’ association.
The presenter was well-prepared and shared interesting information.
He used story telling and statistic to develop his argument and line of thinking.
He emphasized that most interactions are about how validated or not we feel. He said that everyone wants to know the answers to the following three questions:
Do you hear me?
Do you see me?
Do I matter to you?
He exhorted us to remember these three questions when teaching our students.
Today I kept those questions in the back of my mind as I went through my day. I wasn’t hyper focused on them, but I felt that they influenced some of the decisions I made and how I interacted with others.
During our class meeting, a student shared a concern that the way people were behaving in the hallway made it hard for others to maneuver around coats, backpacks and outdoor shoes. She said she was considering talking to the principal. So, I suggested she write him a letter. She did and I delivered it.
Later in the day, she gave me a paper heart. This from a student that can sometimes appear to be be a wee bit irreverent. I interpreted her action to mean that she felt heard, seen and that she mattered to me.
If I can do something to make at least one student every day know that I see and hear them and that they matter, I will feel like I’ve made a difference for that student. That difference could determine a turning point for them.
Every time that I am too rushed or bothered to show a student that I see them or if I’m suspicious of a student’s intention or because my bias has blinded me, I have failed to champion them. To lift them up. To teach them, and the rest of the class, what it means to truly care for others.
I have a lot of work to do.
Cross posted to the Two Writing Teachers Tuesday Slice of Life Challenge.