By Teachers, For Teachers
Are you getting the vibe that your students don’t think you care about them? If so, then you need to make some classroom management changes. According to research, a caring teacher can transform the school experience for a student. Taking the time to use classroom management to make a connection and build a relationship with your students helps them do better in school, and act more kindly toward others as well. Having a productive student-teacher relationship is essential because students need to feel cared about. Think about when you were in school, what teachers did you gravitate toward -- the ones who were all business, or the ones who took the time to get to know you? Here we’ll take a look at a few reasons why your students may not think you care about them, and some classroom management methods to change that.
The first reason your students may think that you don’t care about them is because you never took the time to get to know them. Just as you planned getting-to-know you activities for your students so that they’ll feel more comfortable among their classmates, you should also take the time to get to know them as well. By taking the time, and trying to establish a connection with them, you’re showing them that you care. Try giving an interest survey so you can learn more about their personal lives and see what kind of personalities they have. You can also try getting-to-know you activities just as you did for the students in the beginning of the year.
Another reason your students may think you don’t care about them is because you never took the time to listen to their opinions. If you’re the kind of teacher who does most of the talking in class, then this may be the reason why your students are frustrated with you. Take the time to really listen to what your students have to say, don’t just hear what they are saying, but really listen to what they are saying when they’re speaking. Instead of you doing all of the talking, encourage your students to share their ideas and opinions with you and the class. Try and “Actively” listen to your students when they’re talking. And if any of them are coming to you with a personal problem or confiding in you about how they feel about an upcoming test, then make sure that you take the time and check in with them to see how they are doing, or how the test went. By doing this, it will help you develop a trusting relationship with your students, and show that you care about them.
If you never took the time to listen to your students, then they may also think that you don’t value their opinion. If you really want to show them that you care then you must take the time to get feedback from your students. You can get their feedback on how you are doing as a teacher, what they want to learn, or even how they want to learn. Just by taking the time to ask them for their feedback, you’re showing them that you value what they have to say. By showing them that you value their opinions, you’re creating an environment where students feel safe to ask questions as well as give their opinions.
As a teacher, you have many responsibilities. So for some teachers, when the bell rings at the end of the school day, this means their job is done. The problem with checking out for the day is that when there’s a school event to go to, you won’t be there. Sometimes your students need you to show up to show them that you care. This simple act can make a world of difference in a student’s life, especially to the students who are disadvantaged and don’t have the parental support at home. If you find that your life is just too busy to attend any after-school events, then just make an effort to show up for a few minutes (at any school event) so your students will know you’re there to support them. This can make a huge impact on your students’ lives not only personally, but academically.
If you never let your students in, and never let them know anything personal about you, then you’re essentially telling them that they’re not worth your time. By opening up and letting your students really get to know you, it can help them feel connected to you. The smallest caring gesture can have a huge impact on a student. Something as little as taking the time to ask a student how they are doing can really turn around someone’s day. Show students you care and adopt a few of these ideas into your everyday routine, you won’t be sorry you did.
What do you do to show your students that you care about them? Do you have any classroom management tips or suggestions on this topic? Please tell us in the comment section below we would love to hear what works for your classroom.
Janelle Cox is an education writer who uses her experience and knowledge to provide creative and original writing in the field of education. Janelle holds Masters of Science in Education from the State University of New York College at Buffalo. She is a contributing writer to TeachHUB.com, TeachHUB Magazine, and Hey Teach. She was also the Elementary Education Expert for About.com for five years. You can follow her on Twitter @empoweringed, on Facebook at Empowering K12 Educators, or contact her at Janellecox78@yahoo.com