You are a listener. You have a dedication to the social and emotional well-being of your students, and want to make sure that everything you do in the classroom connects to their immediate needs to understand themselves and their lives. Students likely find you trustworthy, and may even confide in you in ways that they do not for other teachers. You know media is just one facet of student life, and you want to engage with it to help them through the highs and lows of life in all of its challenges and opportunities.
Help students understand and guard themselves against media representations that hurt their self-esteem.
Counteract stereotypes and misrepresentations that students identify with or recognize.
Create a safe, private space in the classroom for students to feel honored, respected, and listened to when they talk about their personal relationships.
Encourage students to express their feelings and emotions through media production.
Spark conversations about students’ personal experiences with digital media and popular culture and the way it affects their lives.
Integrate reflective practice into students’ writing and media production activities.
Spirit Guides tend to be highly trustworthy. Students confide in Spirit Guides, telling them things about their lives, thoughts, and feelings that they may not share with other teachers. Spirit Guides are receptive to students’ emotional well-being and sense of self-esteem.
Many students have private media lives that they may feel ambivalent about sharing in classroom environments. Spirit Guides need to be particularly careful when it is OK for students not to share, especially when students have concerns about appropriateness, privacy, or peer judgment of their media lives.