Not all of my students understand my humor. This has always been true and, I think, it could easily be argued that I'm not funny.
Since I began teaching in 2004, my humor and tone have occasionally put me in hot water to greater or lesser degrees. I started my career with the idea that if they didn't get my humor, that's on them. If they were upset by the things that I said, that was their problem. I knew what I meant and I never intended to upset any students. They shouldn't be so sensitive. Give me a break!
Over the years, however, and over the course of many conversations with other educators, I no longer feel this way.
Yes, I still believe that some students can be overly sensitive and can often read way too much into the actions and words of other people.
The difference now is that I realize it doesn't matter. Intentions are important, but not nearly as much as so impact. If a student is upset by the things that I may say or do, I need to examine what I'm saying and doing.
That may involve having conversations with them to determine WHY they felt the way that they did, allowing each of us to explain our feelings.
It is never my intent to make students uncomfortable, but I do try to push them out of their comfort zones.
I think there is a VERY strange and difficult balance to be struck between safety and comfort.
No one learns to be a great swimmer by staying in the shallow end.
I don't want to be a drill sergeant, but I also don't want to coddle.
Communication must be the bridge.
Now, to figured out how to take my default tone setting off of "Sarcastic"...