What Students Really Need to Hear

A post that captures the ideals of being “adequate” and not worrying about being the best, being perfect, being accomplished. Perhaps I look at the world in the wrong way since I see our culture is focused on “achievement” as a measurable event. Somehow it seems that we only really succeed when we are in the 98th percentile.
My daughter came home with what is called the “interim report” – not a report card but a report that flags concerns. Every entry said “progressing well.” And she was upset. To me that is a wonderful report but you see “all” of her friends had at least one “progressing very well.” And she didn’t.
Her take away was this: She is not doing “very” well. And that is simply not the reality of her life, but that is how she is reading that ephemeral piece of paper. And that is probably how all her peers read their bits of paper.

AFFECTIVE LIVING

It’s 4 a.m.  I’ve struggled for the last hour to go to sleep.  But, I can’t.  Yet again, I am tossing and turning, unable to shut down my brain.  Why?  Because I am stressed about my students.  Really stressed.  I’m so stressed that I can only think to write down what I really want to say — the real truth I’ve been needing to say — and vow to myself that I will let my students hear what I really think tomorrow.

This is what students really need to hear:

First, you need to know right now that I care about you. In fact, I care about you more than you may care about yourself.  And I care not just about your grades or your test scores, but about you as a person. And, because I care, I need to be honest with you. Do I have permission to be…

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