Teacher’s Check-In Chart For Students To Share Their Feelings Goes Viral

Teacher’s Check-In Chart For Students To Share Their Feelings Goes Viral

Sofie Tapia BoredPanda staff More and more people are using whatever platform they have to speak out about mental health awareness, whether they are celebrities or people with a large Twitter following – this kind of visibility is important to people who have felt alone. English special education teacher Erin Castillo decided to use her classroom as her platform to educate and support her students about their mental health with a creative daily exercise. After several students attempted suicide in the past five years of her teaching, the San Francisco Bay Area educator found an innovative way to check on her pupils – with a check-in chart. High-School special education teacher Erin Castillo just went viral for her mental health check-in chart Image credits: makingastatementinsped
Castillo wanted to create a non-verbal way for her students to communicate how they were feeling through a semi-anonymous system. On the chart, students are asked to indicate their mood that day with post-it notes on a scale from, “I’m great” and “I’m okay” to “I’m having a hard time and wouldn’t mind a check-in” or “I’m in a really dark place.” Studies have shown a correlation between people with learning disabilities and suicidal behavior, particularly among women, and as well as with other disabilities such as autism . The educator told Insider, “So many people think they’re the only ones struggling,”and added, “Kids need to hear that they’re not alone and what that support looks like.” Image credits: Erin Castillo
The inspiration for the check-in chart came from a teacher support page, she wrote in her Instagram caption:
“Made this mental health check in chart after seeing @missjohnstonsjourney use a digital version for teachers on her #okayteacher Facebook page.I asked my students to write their names on the back of a post-it note so I could check in with ones in the bottom two sections. I explained the green section as them struggling, but speaking to another adult or trying to work through it themselves.•••I was able to start some check ins today, and holy cow these kids. I love them. My heart hurts for them. High school is rough sometimes, but I was happy that a few were given a safe space to vent and work through some feelings.•••I also like that students could visually see that they aren’t alone in their struggles. It was a beautiful minimum day focusing on self care and mental health.” Her post was shared on a Facebook page called Suicide Awareness/Prevention and spread across the internet

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