Oh no... Student has a crush on me... Am I handling correctly?

Discussion in 'Sixth Grade' started by MetalTeacher, Feb 14, 2017.

  1. MetalTeacher

    MetalTeacher Rookie

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    Feb 14, 2017

    I'm a senior level male university student and I'm currently doing my middle school practicum with 6th graders. One of my students seems to have developed a crush on me. At first I thought she was just shy or has social anxiety issues, and her teacher has said that this student is shy before, but as I spend more time there her actions speak to more than just shyness.

    She stares at me a lot and when I look in her general direction, will either hide behind her coat or smile and wave intensely. (I wave back no more than once per class; I don't want to be strangely distant and not greet one student when I say hello to any of the others who approach me. Others have waved at me too but not several times within a 45 minute block.) She whispers to her friend while they both look at me. (I pretend not to notice.) She gave me a sticker one time. (Just sat it down on my desk, smiled, and ran away before I could react so I didn't do much of anything in response.)

    I don't want to be rude so I'm trying to treat her just like any of the other students. I haven't said anything to my host teacher yet (I said something early on when I was afraid she might have social anxiety or something but not since my other revelation.) Am I handling this okay, or is there something else I should be doing or not doing?

    They don't exactly cover this in my university classes.
     
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  3. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Feb 14, 2017

    I'm going to give you the save advice I gave my student teacher in the fall (by the way, kudos to you for being concerned--my ST didn't seem to understand that it was a problem that 3 of my girls had obvious crushes on him):

    As a young male, you need to tread carefully. You need to be absolutely sure that you aren't inadvertently sending any messages that can be misinterpreted by a hormonal preteen. Don't be cold or distant, and don't ignore her, but be professional and don't give her any attention that is different from that you give any other student. If you stand at the door as the students enter the classroom, you can greet everyone as they enter. Don't get drawn into personal discussions, even during "down time" like recess or lunch. Don't, under any circumstances, be alone with her (or even with her and a couple of her girlfriends). If she hangs back to "talk", move to stand in the doorway if your host teacher isn't in the room. If she asks to come for extra help, have your host teacher present.

    I understand your hesitancy, but please talk to your host teacher about this; she can help. This isn't uncommon and you do need to develop some appropriate strategies for dealing with it.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2017
  4. MetalTeacher

    MetalTeacher Rookie

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    Feb 14, 2017

    Thank you. It sounds like, with the exception of having talked to my host teacher again, that I've done everything you said. My host teacher is always in the room when I am, except when they run to grab copies quickly or something (but in those cases I have all 15+ students in the room with me) and on the rare occasion that I'm still there at lunch, I'm at the teachers' table, so there's no chance of me being left alone with this student. I try my best to treat all the students the same: be friendly, learn their names, offer to help when they look confused or are charging the teacher's desk. I avoid getting drawn into personal discussions with all of the students anyway; I don't need them getting off-topic any more than they do on their own.

    I'll definitely talk to my host teacher this week and see what they have to say. Thank you!
     
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  5. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Feb 15, 2017

    If this happens when you become an actual teacher, make sure you inform admin and counselors so they are aware of everything just in case someone decides to make accusations.
     
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  6. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Feb 15, 2017

    You're also doing yourself a service by practicing documenting the issue. Once you're teaching without a second person in the classroom, anything like that might be best emailed to yourself so there's a time stamp. This may sound paranoid, but Peregrin raises a good point about accusations. Weekly reflections are ALWAYS a good thing even after student teaching is done, so doing those and emailing them to your home computer might work, even if there is never a personal problem ever again.
     
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  7. MetalTeacher

    MetalTeacher Rookie

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    Feb 17, 2017

    Thanks for all the advice, everyone. I had no idea that this was actually as common as it apparently is.
     
  8. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Feb 17, 2017

    Sing it with me!
    "We're... too sexy for our classrooms, too sexy for our classrooms..."
    Apologies to Right Said Fred.
     
  9. Secondary Teach

    Secondary Teach Companion

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    Feb 17, 2017

    In addition to catnfiddle's sound advice, you can tell the student "don't stand so...don't stand so...dont stand so close to me". Apologies to the Police, for using their cult classic but it is very good advice indeed.
    :)
     
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