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I Wish My Teacher Knew...

Written by Lindsey Byrd
November 18, 2020

Each year, I look forward to meeting and getting to know my students. Every year is a new group of students with such unique relationships and bonds they have previously built. When I heard about this activity, I was excited about what answers I would get. This year has been tough with getting to know my students on a personal level with an all distance learning model.

First, I opened up the activity with expressing how in life we always go through ups and downs. That we aren’t always going to have good days or bad days. I also noted that as their teacher, I am here to listen to them and be there for them if there are things going on that make their days bad or good. I related what we were about to do to our daily check-ins with each other. They immediately lit up and were eager to start the activity.

I teach 3rd grade, so for the most part they have very good communication skills and I wanted to provide them with a range of how they could respond to the sentence, “I wish my teacher knew…”. I use the platform Seesaw for distance learning and thought it would be perfect for this because they are so familiar with it. I created the activity to be very open-ended with how they could respond. They had the option of drawing a picture, writing a note, recording their voice, or recording a video of themselves. I was very surprised by diverse media the children chose. They most commonly used writing and recording themselves reading.

As for the depth of my student’s answers, they ranged from very vague to very detailed. I found out some things I never would have thought about my students. It made me step back and realize the emotional hardships that some may be going through. It also revealed to me the emotional maturity some of my students have.

Overall, I highly recommend this activity at the beginning of every school year. I think it can be highly beneficial to the relationships you build with your students.