“I wish my teacher knew sometimes my reading log is not signed because my mom is not around a lot.”
“I wish my teacher knew that I want to go to college.”
“I wish my teacher knew I don’t have friends to play with me.”
Those are some of the candid confessions scrawled by primary school students and shared on social media using the hashtag #IWishMyTeacherKnew this month.
The social media movement started after a teacher in the US asked her students to write notes beginning with the phrase: “I Wish My Teacher Knew” in class.
“As a new teacher, I struggled to understand the reality of my students’ lives and how to best support them. I just felt like there was something I didn’t know about my students,” teacher Kyle Schwartz told ABC News in the US.
While the lesson plan was intended to build trust with her students, the year three students were so frank with their responses that the shared some on Twitter using the hashtag #IWishMyTeacherKnew, encouraging fellow teachers to introduce the same lesson plan into their classroom.
The hashtag has since caught on, and some of the submissions are beautiful.
“Some notes are heartbreaking like the first #iwishmyteacherknew tweet which read, ‘I wish my teacher knew I don’t have pencils at home to do my homework.’
“I care deeply about each and every one of my students and I don’t want any of them to have to suffer the consequences of living in poverty, which is my main motivation for teaching.”
Ms Schwarz added that while she let her students determine if they wanted to answer anonymously, she found that most students actually enjoyed sharing their personal experiences with the class.
“Even when what my students are sharing is sensitive in nature, most students want their classmates to know.”
Click through a gallery of some @IWishMyTeacherKnew notes:
What do you wish your teacher knew?
Related content: The school principal changing the lives of asylum seekers.