This simple question that will make you glad you asked

"Ever since I did poorly on the {state test} I freak out every time I take a test."
"We have 3 birds, 2 dogs, and 4 cats."
"I don't know who my father is. My mother says he wasn't a good person. But I'd like to know."

Cover of a free product "I wish my teacher knew..."
Gulp.

The challenges our students carry these days can help us better understand them and their behavior.

When I first read about what Kyle Schwartz, a third-grade teacher from Denver, had done with her students some years back, I was amazed at its simplicity.  

And at how much she learned.  

I gave it to my students every year.  You know how sometimes, you just have the feeling that kids are getting frustrated - it might be with the work or each other.  Or you!  And they don't want to say it out loud.  But you get the sense that they need to talk.  

Sometimes a class meeting would serve the purpose.  Other times, writing it down like this is the answer.

As an ELA teacher who talks about books a lot, I got many  "I love to read" or "I really don't like to read" and a bunch of "I really like to play sports!"

But then there were these....
I wish my teacher knew
   
And this one.
I wish my teacher knew
This helped explain how this boy responded to a less than stellar grade on a test and immediately wanted to know about extra credit.  

And then this one.
I wish my teacher knewSo glad!

I wish my teacher knewThat's okay.  We'll get there.  Together.

I'm grateful that they shared some part of themselves with me.  It helped me get to know them a little better.  And I hope they felt heard.

If you'd like to try this, I have an editable freebie for you on TpT.  Click on the picture up at the top or on the link to get it.  I hope you try it and learn a little more about those children sitting in your classrooms this week.
  • Click here to get more teacher tips and freebies!

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