To hear the concern from students (directly or indirectly) that they feel that "I want them to think like me" causes me to ask myself so many things:
- What am I doing that might feed this misconception?
- What am I doing to welcome everyone to think/do in their own ways and have troubling but safe discussions/actions when we have conflicting visions?
- What am I doing to encourage everyone that they can be critical and caring at the same time?
- What am I doing to model ethical thinking and doing?
- What can more can I do? What should I minimize? What should I stop doing?
- What can I do to encourage purposeful thinking and doing?
- What can I do to encourage multiple ways of thinking and doing?
- What can I do to constantly open up things that might be closed in ways that are playful, welcoming, and engaging (but not easy)?
- How can I encourage all to explore cognitive dissonance and ambiguity?
- How do I respond if this concern is actually a veiled avoidance of critical thinking and doing?
Teaching is hard. Reflecting is hard. Trying to constantly become a more reflective teacher is so exhausting, but so very worthwhile.