No significant learning occurs without a significant relationship…” ~Dr. James Comer
Truer words were never spoken. I remember my first major difficulty when I moved to Dublin was the fact that I didn’t know the children, the schools, the area, nothing! I had come from knowing children in my local schools very well. When you are from a small area, everyone knows everyone. You know the name of the children’s dog, siblings etc, and you might meet them at your nephews birthday party, in the shop. or wherever. Compare that to working in a school with 300 or more students, where you don’t know the teachers names, not to mention the students! I found this hard to get used to. The toughest is the day to day subbing, you don’t have a hope of getting to know the children. I was lucky because I was in one school from September-November, then I was between that same school and two others, so I did get to know the children eventually.
Now, I have my own class until June. I stepped into the classroom back in January and didn’t know one child from the other. Now, however, I know the children very well indeed. The only way to get to know your class is to talk to them. When they are doing their written work, just do the rounds of the classroom and have a little chat with them individually. Try get to all children throughout the day. Share your news too during news time. My class love hearing about home , my nephews and my dogs! Sharing news is a big part of my classroom routine. Each day we share local, national and international news.
Classroom debates and discussions are a great way to get to know your students too. For teaching and learning to be truly taking place, a strong and positive teacher/student relationship needs to be in place. If you get this right, the rest will fall into place.[pb_builder]