When a child won’t share …

Today, I asked a child who is normally very happy to be with me some questions that made her feel uncomfortable. It shifted the mood in the room and I felt her shutting down.

We started off well. We used emojis to rate how we feel in different lessons. She was able to articulate why she felt that way. One area was a sad face. So we shifted to rating or relationships with different people. She rated most with her relationships with teachers as a 9 or 10 out of ten. But for the teacher for the subject that got the sad emoji, she rated the relationship as a 5.

All was still going well.



Then, I shared the reasons why I blog and I asked if she could help me by telling me how she felt … About small group learning, about being withdrawn from class. And the shut down began. There were no answers. Only shrugs.

“Do you use what we learn here anywhere else?” – no response.

“Do you think about what we do here after you leave?” – no response.

“Does what we do here help you in any ways?” – no response.

“Is this making you feel uncomfortable?” …


“Can you tell me why?”


I decide it’s time to change track. We look at the words “their, there and they’re”. There is little animation and not much “give”.

I know I need to salvage the lesson before she leaves. We go onto Geoguessr. A light of sunshine enters the room.

I berate myself. I thought the suggestion to blog about a child’s point of view was great. I didn’t consider that the child might not think so … I need to ask myself some questions …




About Jina Belnick

I am a full time learner - tumbling head first into education and joining my learners on the amazing adventures that we encounter daily at our PYP school in Melbourne, Australia.I am currently working in learning support, feeling the waters and seeing how teachers and learners are best supported, I am a listener and a leader, an inquirer and a follower. I'm loving the ride!
This entry was posted in Jina, learning support, Thinking. Bookmark the permalink.

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