Connecting With Students

I feel like I have always been able to connect with most of my students.  Here are some things that I do/did that helped me make those connections:

  • Ask students questions about what is going on in their lives.  Then listen to what they say.
  • Let students know about you!   Reveal embarrassing moments, or high school memories, or what brings you to the community you are in.
  • Show up at stuff.  Easy to do in high school – there is always a game, event, club….Then talk with the students about their performance.
  • Answer questions in a way that is inviting for others, that promotes questioning.  Don’t answer questions in a way that shuts down the conversation or gives a stand offish impression.
  • Sponsor an activity/club (see above)
  • Have passion and let your students see it.  Share your passion with them and give them no choice but to be sucked in!
  • Allow your students to be unique – don’t force them all into the same box.
  • Be genuinely happy to teach and interact with your students – they can tell if you enjoy what you are doing!

Did I connect with every student.  No.  Did I try?  Yes!  I think I made a difference and made positive connections – that was my goal every year!

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