I found this note in a pile of homework. It was written by a woman in her 50s. She is African-American, heavy set, missing teeth, soft spoken and a bit hard to understand when she talks. But she regularly raises her hand to offer supportive words to her classmates when I ask the women to share their thoughts on a topic.
And my response to her, sent via JPay, an online, one-way communication tool. (Inmates do not have Internet access and cannot respond via JPay. Incoming JPay messages are reviewed, printed and delivered by prison security.)
I read your note of concern and reviewed your homework. I want you to know that you will be fine in this class. I understand your writing, and I think it is brave of you to participate in this class when you don't have much confidence in your writing ability. If I am ever unclear on what you are trying to write in your homework, I will simply ask you in person later. Please continue to participate in this class. You are a valuable member. Don't be discouraged. This is not the type of class where we grade grammar and punctuation. This is more about writing to get your feelings out.