Seth Godin recently posted a brilliant article on his blog – here’s a paraphrased UK version…
Assumptions are what you use to bridge a gap in your own knowledge. If they turn out to be accurate, then you got lucky and your lack of research didn’t let you down – this time.
A lack of information or misinformation can be solved by a conversation. Conversations lead to relationships and relationships lead to education.
I was chatting to a friend who lives in California and asked him about the vibe around the US election.
He told me that the general chatter in coffee shops – and this is from regular people sucking down caramel macchiatos and the like – is that if Trump gets elected it’ll be OK because someone will probably just shoot him!
After Brexit people were subjected to horrific comments and actions based on what colour their skin was, what accent they had or how much of their body was covered in fabric.
Some of our teachers, and learners were scared.
I heard from a teacher who had been advised to not engage in any conversations around Brexit in case they impressed their own views on the learners.
The US election provides an opportunity for conversation around the politcial issues but also on the values, comments and actions of the candiates. That means conversations around difficult topics like racism, sexism and other isms!
I see some schools embracing this and others trying to avoid it. Conflict is always the problem and education is always the solution. As teachers our job is to educate. That’s best done when learners are enrolled in a relationship with you enough to have a conversation.
The day we’re scared to ask and answer questions, even the hard ones we don’t know the answer to, is the day we give up on our learners entirely.
If you’d like a WAGOLL of how to deal with difficult conversations, CLICK HERE to check out how Obama handles Clinton Supporters booing at a Trump protestor.