And every child says, "I am home."
Our home can be seen through two different lenses.
- The lens of Comfort: Where we find certainty, peace, love, support, warmth, trust, devotion, laughing, safety, time, opinions...
- The lens of Disarray: Where we find doubt, disgust, yelling, sadness, scariness, abuse, fighting, selfishness, busy, hiding, shunning...
For the students who come with a "lens of comfort", they will strive in an environment created to make them feel safe, loved, and supported. They are used to it... they do not have to get out of their comfort zone. They are already at "home".
For the students who come with a "lens of disarray", their heart is harden, tough, and unbreakable. They are not used to an environment of comfort; reassurance is key.
Every situation has its own face, but here are a few ways to soften a harden heart:
Listen with intent.
Persistence even with resistance.
Student voice with choice.
Stability from hostility.
We know our students. We know them through their actions. We can tell what type of lens they are seeing their home through.
Obviously, we all shoot for the lens of comfort when creating the culture of our classrooms... but, now is NOT the time to put shades on. All the students are watching us. We must see clearly when each of our students enter our classroom...Not sugar coating anything, not creating different expectations based on their history, and not loving any ONE of them more than the other.
We can be the change agents in these children's lives. Let's make it known that they are home when they enter our rooms.
Welcome them will open arms, welcome them with honesty, welcome them with stability and support, welcome them comfort...