The twenty-second story really spoke to me because I think it is important to remember that we, as teachers, were young once too and we may have experienced similar issues growing up. I think students forget this sometimes. I really liked how this teacher recognized the similarities she had with the student and was willing to embrace them. She was unsure how to do it at first, but she did eventually give in. The fact that the student was willing to share her journal with the teacher shows that the teacher somehow made a connection with the student. It’s hard to know what to do in situations like this because we aren’t specifically trained to do it, but sometimes just being there to listen is enough.
I’m not so sure how I feel about the twenty-sixth story. Though I agree it would be hard to report something that you are obligated to report even though the student makes you promise not to say anything, it is still your responsibility as a teacher. I’m really nervous that something like this might happen to me when I’m a teacher and I won’t have any idea what to do. I know it takes a lot of courage for a student to admit something like that to a teacher, and it would hurt them a lot to have a teacher report it. They may not realize it, but in most cases, it is what’s best for the student.
I have seen one common theme throughout a number of these stories: sharing something very personal with your students. I’m having a hard time agreeing with what some of those teachers did. Stories about rape, for example, don’t really seem appropriate for in the classroom. Although sometimes sharing a story may encourage students to share their own stories, I’m just not sure I would feel comfortable sharing something that personal in front of every student. Also, I’m not sure what the school would consider to be appropriate.