"I just don't understand how you can reject and leave people who you say you love."
# 34 Teaching Children From Divorce
Statistically, couples divorce just over 50%, leaving most children to be raised in a one parent family. These children tend to worry more. They think the divorce was somehow their fault. I have been surprised at how often my friends got their children ready and sat them on the front porch, waiting for a visit that didn't materialize. I never told my children when they were supposed to have a visit. I had overnight bags packed. If their dad showed up, I would exclaim, "Guess what! Your dad is here to see you because he loves you so much!" Yea!! Then my kids would get all happy and the visit started off well. I can't imagine telling children they were going to have a visit when their father was highly unpredictable.
I never believed in divorce. But unless your spouse feels the same way, there is not much you can do about it, especially the three A's, Abuse, Addiction, or Adultery. If that is going on, why do you want to be married anyway? Talk is way cheaper when the story's good.
As they emerge into adolescents , they look for way's they are supposed to behave. Being a young adult is very difficult to mimic without a role model. As a teacher, you can not fix the home situation, but what can you do? Partner children carefully so that they are less likely for attention to wonder. Have frequent talks about character and behaviors that constitute good role models. Give lots of positive feedback. Write comments and draw little pictures on their work to make them smile. Put a blank piece of paper on each desk, have students write their names, and circulate around the room and write positive comments that will make their hearts glow. Put a paper on your own desk, too.
Also, tell your students you are going to do an experiment on feelings. Everyone gets a blank piece of paper. Without getting carried away, make a comment like, You're not good in reading, I don't like your shirt, etc. Each time you make a comment crumble up the paper. When the paper is all crumbled up, Say you are Sorry. Very slowly, open up the paper, Using your hand, flatten up the paper. Ask the class what they noticed. What they should notice is that feelings get hurt easily. Even saying you are sorry does put things back the way they were. Words can hurt, and feelings matter. Make an effort to notice students being kind to each other. Do not accept bullying. Teach students, If you see something, say something. Protect each other. Have a space on a door or somewhere good deeds are recognized. Have students use a post-it note to write positive behaviors and put on a Good Deed board.