Society

Colorado Teacher Posts Heartbreaking Notes From Third Graders About Their Lives

| by Lisa Fogarty

A third grade teacher from Denver, Colorado, wanted to get to know her students better and understand their needs, so she created a class project that would allow them to share one thing they wanted their teacher to know about them.

The notes Kyle Schwartz received from her students at Doull Elementary School were so honest and heartbreaking, that she shared them on Twitter, where they have quickly gone viral. 

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"Ninety-two percent of our students qualify for free and reduced lunch," Schwartz reportedly told ABC News. "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." 

Schwartz called her lesson, "I Wish My Teacher Knew." She says she gave her students the option of writing an anonymous note, but that most included their names and were eager and willing to share what they had written with the entire class, even though quite a few children revealed personal stories.

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One student expressed his or her desire to get a good education:

Another child explained why he/she sometimes has trouble completing homework assignments:

And at least two students shared heartbreaking news about their parents:

Inspired by her students' notes, Schwartz created the Twitter hash tag #IWishMyTeacherKnew and encouraged other educators to follow her example and allow their students to open up to them about their needs, reports KFOR. Several teachers used her lesson plan in their own classes and have posted their students' notes on Twitter.

Sources: ABC News, KFOR

Photo Credit: Kyle Schwartz, Twitter via ABC News