Developing a relationship with the students of your classroom has to be a key element in classroom management. To me, respect is the key to your relationship with the class. If there is no respect, the relationship will not work and classroom management will be essentially unattainable. If I do not respect someone, I do not care about what they say, even if they are a teacher. I believe that students will act the same way if they do not respect you as a teacher.
The ways I plan to gain this respect is to make sure I model respect. It is easy, when I am day-dreaming about future teaching situations, to think of my expectations for the students but not think about what they might expect from me. If I am not willing to consider their opinions, I think I will be a terrible teacher. Of course, what students might not really understand what is best for them at times. If I discipline them, they will probably not be enthralled with consequences but in the end they will respect me for holding them accountable.
One of my fears about teacher-student relationships are the students who are belligerent. There are always one or two students whose life goal seems to be to make your life miserable. My first reaction is to view them as the enemy. This is a very, very, very bad way to react. I never want to see my students as enemies but as teenagers who are trying to figure out the world. Some students are going to be coming out of terrible home situations and will take out their frustration on me as their teacher. I want to learn how to best handle these situations so the student knows that I respect him/her despite their actions.
Another aspect to the student-teacher relationship that I think is important is perseverance. From my observations, I have noted that some teachers give up on classroom management which translates to me that they have given up in trying to have a working relationship with their class. I have to persevere despite what my future classes may throw at me. I think it is extremely sad when a teacher gets to a point where he will stop fighting to make his classroom the best it can be.
Lastly, I want to make sure I learn my students name as soon as possible. I think, as simple as it may be, learning your students’ names shows right away that you see them as individuals and that you think they are important. Its always horribly awkward and sad whenever you have a conversation and you cannot remember the other’s name. For a teacher, I think it is ridiculous if you do not take time to learn your students names.
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