Yesterday I talked about how hard it is to be a “caring ear” for all the students who need one, and I propose today to outline my strategy for supporting students without being overwhelmed by their needs. I wouldn’t say I’ve ever perfected this strategy, but practicing has helped keep me on a more even keel, and given me more choice about when I choose to be the caring ear. Continue reading
Armando Gutierrez is the author of “You Don’t Know Me,” a piece which I re-blogged about the great difficulties overcome, the supreme effort that some GED students put forth in order to come to class. A couple of months ago he posted a comment where I had re-blogged his original story, that started me thinking. He asked two questions: Could you deal with some of the issues your GED students are facing each day? And if you were, would you not want a caring ear to listen to you? The simple answers are no, and yes. Continue reading
Whenever we talk about safety in the classroom, the question always comes up: How much can or should an instructor do?
I think most people would agree that the instructor’s job is to establish a tone of respectful discussion and to encourage everyone to participate. Going a step further, I have been writing recently about how I work to make it safe for students to decide if, when and how much they will participate (Just Say Pass and We Wait for Naomi). Continue reading