At the beginning of the year, every educator builds relationships with their students over the first few days of school. There is talk about “reaching them to teach them”. This excitement however fades to dive into teaching content standards as many teachers feel the time crunch of the total number of allotted instructional. If we fast-forward to the middle of the school year, we often see that our connection suffers due to neglect and our relationships become strained. We have trained ourselves as educators to think that it is just what happens toward the end of every school year. It is NOT.
“Great relationships with your students requires consistent nurturing and maintenance.”
What if we spent time maintaining these relationships throughout the school year in our classes? Restoring and maintaining relationships with our students in class is important to create a more positive learning environment during the school year. Building a classroom community where students feel safe to take risks and are comfortable with policing one another leads to increased opportunities for student learning. Teachers who cultivate an environment of student ownership often see an increase in learning time within their classrooms. Content is irrelevant if your students don’t like their teacher. It’s important to maintain our relationships, not just build them.