In our society, it seems essential to be able to develop connections between students and teachers. In order to gain respect, understanding, and to establish a fun learning opportunity, both student and teacher must have a mutual understanding of one another.
It is hard to try to create such a relationship later on in the school year and it is essential to start doing so from day one. I have seen many teachers waste this learning opportunity on the first day of class by going through the routine syllabus (that the kids are barely paying attention to) and going over the district’s policies (which the kids already know, but mostly ignore) when instead the time could be spent building the foundations for the classs. Don’t get me wrong, a syllabi is crucial to classroom structure and establishing ground rules, but doing so in a moderately unconventional way could potentially be more effective. By standing on the top of desks, shouting sporadically, doing classroom exercises that make students think…all of these are ways that could help begin to establish the classroom, and an effective student-teacher relationship, and make for an incredibly interesting year.
Students spend approximately 6 hours per day, 5 days per week, 9 months per year with teachers. Doesn’t it just make sense that the relationships that they have with their teachers are positive, effective, and have meaning? I believe that having fun in the classroom is a stepping-stone to developing good classroom management skills and building firm student-teacher relationships. I also believe that trust needs to be established and incorporated during every class meeting. Students know when their teachers are putting on an act or when they are sincere, and as a result, teachers need to constantly check themselves to make sure that what they are doing is truly within the best interest of their students.
Improving Students’ Relationships with Teachers to Provide Essential Supports for Learning