I really enjoyed hearing author Richard Hawley speak tonight about the importance of building positive relationships with our students, but most importantly our boys. He found that successful student/ teacher relationships were teacher initiated. Teachers who are willing to get to know and understand their students outside the classroom, be willing to share common interests, open up personally, and are willing to be active learners along side their students tended to have successful relationships.
He pointed out that schools where administration made building relationships a priority, where faculty development was devoted to finding out what works and what doesn’t work with classroom climates, and when teachers were given time to meet and adapt to the needs of the students were the most successful at promoting relationships.
I am thankful that I teach in a school where positive relationships with students and peers is a high priority and where support for parents, teachers, and students is not only encouraged, but a school wide goal.