Teaching Emotional Topics

This piece, among other benefits, reinforces the valuable role of students’ prior knowledge, especially with emotional subjects like yesterday’s bombing in Boston.

What I Learned Today

We will start our days at TLC Middle School by reading the day’s news.  Today, the main story is obvious — what happened at the Boston Marathon?

This was an awful raw event, and my thoughts and prayers are with the people of Boston, my home town. Thankfully, all of my family and friends are accounted for and safe — but it’s been a gut-wrenching 24 hours.

As of mid-day on Tuesday, April 16, we don’t know a lot beyond these basics, from the Boston Globe: two bombs went off near the finish line of the Marathon; three people have been killed; more than 170 have been injured, and 17 are in critical condition.

A lesson I learned as a young teacher 15 years ago is that it’s crucial, before starting a discussion with student about an emotional topic such as this one, to see if any students in…

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