Uncovering concerns about dealing with sensitive issues
Think about a situation that has arisen (or might arise) for you which involved a sensitive issue, sensitive material, and/or some level of conflict in the classroom. Imagine you are there now, and in the moment. Briefly outline the specifics of the situation. Then, describe in detail what is going on, both for you and the others involved. Describe how you are feeling. If you are feeling uncomfortable, try to articulate how and why. What is making your heart beat that little bit faster? What precisely are you nervous/worried/concerned about? Be explicit to yourself about your concerns. Write as much as you can.
When you have finished, perform a ‘content analysis’ of what you have written. To do this, read through it a few times, and underline key words and phrases. Identify key ideas which may be articulated in different ways, and keep an eye out for repetition, common themes, but also contradictions. Write a summary on the key aspects of your reflection, with the aim of uncovering your main concern in this situation. Next, think about how you might address this/these main concern/s. What do you need to do? Read some literature about a specific topic or about how to go about doing something? Update your skills in relation to some aspect of your practice? Consult a colleague or adviser? After a little bit of work, construct an action plan which allows you to approach the situation in an inclusive way that allows you to feel more comfortable.