|Image Source: Pixabay.com|
How often are we quick to mark our students late for the day and yet, we don't ever ask why? What happened that caused them to not get to school on time? Is everything okay at home? Do their parents know they're late? Are they the cause of the tardiness?
I've had some interesting experiences with stepping back and talking with my students. Finding out about their lives and what's happening with them. I don't think I'm the only teacher who talks to their students like humans, all be it little humans, but humans nonetheless. But even still, I've been called strange and weird for asking them why things happen and why they aren't capable of completing things. I don't always get great answers, but I still like to ask because it shows I care more about them than the stupid assignments or grades or even their lack punctuality.
I've been in situations where students have told me they are late because they have to get themselves and their siblings ready because Mom and Dad are both at work and can't do it. I've been told they are late because they have to do everything themselves because their parents don't care if they show up or not, so it's entirely up to them. I've been told they're late because they just don't feel like coming to school because nobody cares if they're there anyways. All of these reasons make my heart break because these elementary kids aren't being allowed to be kids but are being forced to grow up too soon. I'm especially saddened when a student says the don't want to be at school because nobody cares because then I feel like I've not done my job as a teacher.
Are we taking the time needed each day to help our students know they are important and special? I only have six more days of school this year and I know that for the next six days I plan to shower my students with support and encouragement because KidsDeserveIt!