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Teacher's heartbreaking experiment is a tear-jerking lesson about importance of listening

Mirror logo Mirror 13/10/2017 Zahra Mulroy

© OJO+ With a knack of speaking their mind, children may seem as if they're happy to share the minutiae of their worlds, but as one teacher discovered - the opposite is often true.

Elle Deal is a primary school teacher who conducted a little experiment on her class - with heartbreaking results.

The teacher, from Florida, wanted her class to share their fears and anxieties with her, but in a discrete and anonymous way.

So she devised a project called "I wish my teacher would know..."

The premise was simple. Each student submitted an answer under faceless masks on the wall and Elle requested they write something with the heading "I wish my teacher would know..."

And the responses will tug at your heart-strings.

"Kid 1: I wish my teacher would know, my dad is in jail and I haven't seen him in years.

"Kid 2: I wish my teacher would know, I don't always eat dinner because my mom works and I don't know how to work the stove. 

"Kid 3: I wish my teacher would know, my sister sleeps in the same bed as me and sometimes she wets the bed and that's why I smell funny.

"Kid 4: I wish my teacher would know that I don't always have sneakers for gym class because my brothers and I share one pair.

"Kid 5: I wish my teacher would know I like coming to school because it's quiet here, not like my house with all the yelling."

Elle originally posted about the project earlier this year, but it has recently started being shared and talked about again.

It's struck a chord with thousands of people - not just parents either.

And as Elle later added: "We spend so much time talking and judging what we think we know... we need to ask more questions and spend more time listening.

"We also need to shift our mindset and see things from other people's perspective. Give more than we get. Live to serve and to help make a difference in others lives."

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