By Shelly Koren
It’s difficult for a student to create a decent relationship with both their teacher and their peers because of the surmounting pressure to stand out and appear popular. While developing socially is crucial to the school experience it should not undermine the value and significance of maintaining a good relationship with the teacher.
This by no means suggests that students should get out of their way to perform the role of “teacher’s pet,” but they should appreciate the amount of effort a teacher puts into their work because it will help them in the long run. For example university professor Julia Crindel states that with participation marks she knows that some students just do not feel as comfortable talking in class, and has decided to not penalize them for it. Instead, she focuses on how the student tries to learn from her outside of class.
“If a student needs help with something they can email me, or come to my office during the correct hours, and this can account for their participation as well because I know that they are making the effort.”
Not only does it help in a university setting, but in high school teachers stay after class if the student requests extra assistance, therefore benefiting the student from a positive teacher-student relationship. This can be developed outside of class, but also during school hours. Mr. Boylin, a high school teacher says that there are many ways to appeal to your teacher:
• Be social after class – that means using an indoor voice and no disrupting the teacher
• Stay organized – keep all your notes they will be useful later. Asking for a teacher’s help without all the notes needed is a great way to lose the positive teacher-student relationship
• Bring the proper text book to class – forgetting it in your locker is fine once in a while but if you make it a habit the teacher will get suspicious of why that is
• Don’t fake doing work when you haven’t – the teacher knows and lying only weakens the positive association
• Most importantly remember that the teacher is a person as well- while they deserve your utmost respect it is always exciting to find common ground with a student, and it makes the class so much more interesting