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  1. Lauren #

    I agree with this on so many levels! You cannot begin to have difficult conversation if you haven’t laid the proper foundation with your students. Teachers have to set clear expectations for these types of discussions, as well as build relationships with students and between students so that they feel comfortable enough to be open with each other. Discourse is such an important part of democracy and one we are sorely lacking. We, as teachers, have the power to rebuild these skills!

    November 11, 2020
  2. Mitchell #

    This is great – thank you so much! I agree that it is extremely important to bring these conversations into the classroom because this gives the students the opportunity to develop lifelong skills that they will need to navigate controversial conversations which will surely come up in their personal/professional lives in the future. People, on average, do want to make the world a better place, sometimes they just don’t know how. Likewise, students would often like to share and discuss their opinions, they just may not know how and making use of these tools in the classroom can go a long way in equipping them!

    November 12, 2020
    • glennw #

      Mitchell,

      You’re welcome! It is a hard thing but a very necessary thing. Kids do want to be heard and to help make change. We need to work harder to find ways to encourage and support that.

      Thanks for the comment!

      glennw

      November 12, 2020
  3. Tim #

    This is a great resource! I am definitely one of those teachers who does usually not want to talk about politics in the classroom. However, I have come to believe that it is extremely important to allow students to have a discussion with their peers, and it is even more important for there to be a healthy dialogue between students who disagree. I think that we, as teachers, should be able to teach students how to have an open mind and engage with ideas they disagree with, rather than avoiding them, or worse, simply insulting the people with whom they disagree. Going forward, I will try to start implementing these strategies in my classroom. Hopefully, with lots of practice, my students and I will be comfortable discussing politics and current issues in class. Thank you for this amazing resource!

    November 18, 2020
    • glennw #

      Tim,

      You’re welcome! Appreciate you taking the time to stop in and read through the post. Good luck as you implement some of these tools into your instruction!

      glennw

      November 24, 2020
  4. Andrew #

    This post was very enlightening! Difficult conversations are difficult to have even in our day to day lives with people who do not agree with us. Students expect us to have all of the answers, which often we do not. However, this does not mean that we should not be prepared to answers the tough questions in some capacity. Classroom expectations must be established early on to ensure that these tough conversations maintain civility, but they simply cannot be avoided. Students are growing each and every day, so they have an expectation that in school, the difficult topics of the world will be addressed. We must teach them how to successfully navigate these conversations, engage with others, and grapple with ideas that challenge theirs.

    November 18, 2020
    • glennw #

      Andrew,

      Appreciate the comments, thanks for stopping by! Classroom conversations have always been difficult, hoping these resources can help.

      glennw

      November 24, 2020
  5. mk #

    Glenn,
    Thanks for this post. I constantly struggle with how much to let students express themselves. Especially those students that are in the minority. Building classroom community makes it easier. Conversation is becoming a lost art.

    November 19, 2020
    • glennw #

      Michael,

      Appreciate the comments! I agree, it’s harder than ever to have classroom conversations. Hopefully these tools can help. Good luck!

      glennw

      November 24, 2020

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