Discussion in 'General Education' started by laura007, Nov 27, 2010.
Nov 27, 2010
As a new teacher, I'm confused why my some students seem dislike me though I've try hard.
Well, I don't think you can MAKE kids do anything...you have to earn it, just like their respect. What grade level are you at? What makes you think they dislike you?
The quick answer is that you can't make them love you. You can't make anyone love you.
That said, there are things you can do to make your class a place the kids enjoy being.
You don't mention the grade or level you teach, so I'll speak from the perspective of a high school teacher.
I've found that I can be as demanding as I choose (and I'm pretty demanding) as long as the kids see me as fair. Fair means a lot of things to kids:
- it means that I treat them, for the most part, equally. That the 'goody two shoes' up front who forgets her homework gets the same reaction the first time as the scary kid in the back.
-that said, it means that I'm not above making an occasional exception. So the kid who comes into my class sobbing over the death of her dog gets a bye on the test, and is able to make it up at a later date. "Fair" doesn't have to mean "heartless."
-Fair means that I realize that my class is NOT the only priority in their lives. My kids are allowed to miss, then make up without penalty, up to 3 homeworks per marking period. (Sometimes life gets in the way of homework, and I would prefer a makeup to having them copy it in homeroom.) Also, my kids and their parents all know that I have a 20 minute rule for homework-- at the end of 20 minutes, they can close the math book. No 15 year old should be up until 2 am trying to figure out math; they can always come to extra help instead.
-Fair means they're not taken by surprise. I gave them the year's test dates in September, and give them 4 or 5 days notice for a test, a day or 2 for a quiz. They know what to expect from my tests; they get the breakdown of problems a day or 2 ahead of time.
-Aside from testing, I try to make my class a pleasant place to be. I joke around a bit, very often at my own expense. I stand at the doorway and welcome them as they come in, and say hi when we pass in the hall. I congratulate the ones whose names were mentioned on the morning sports annoucements.
I guess that what I'm trying to say is that, as much as I value the content (and that's a massive understatement!!), the overwhelming priority is that I'm teaching KIDS. Every kid in that room is some mother's baby, even though most of them outweigh and tower over me. I treat every one of those kids the way I'm praying other teachers are treating my own children.
I don't think that all of my kids "love" me-- there will always be a few that simply don't care for a particular teacher. But I would like to think that they all respect me, and that none of them feel targeted in my class.
I'm not even sure why that's a priority. As Alice said, I think respect is more important than how much they like you. I would also be curious to see what grade level this is. If it's elementary, I would say maybe make things more fun and exciting, loosen up. If it's middle or HS then I doubt many teachers have ALL their students "love" them just because most have expectations of performance. Maybe you're just trying too hard.
Are they learning from you? That would be my priority, especially as a new teacher. I think they can still learn in your class even if they don't "love" you.
It's a fact of life that not all kids love every teacher, just as sometimes there are kids teachers wish were in other classes. Lots of things can get in the way of a relationship between teachers and students - personality conflicts, problems at home, dislike of the subject area, etc. I know after seventeen years of teaching, I hope the students who come into my room will enjoy my class and will respect me as a teacher. I go out of my way to create a classroom that is inviting, comfortable, and a safe place to read, write, and share opinions. I am realistic enough to know, however, that each year one or two students would rather do ANYTHING than come to language arts in room 110. I don't take it personally anymore, and I realize that above and beyond what I've already done, there's not much more I can do.
Kids want and need structure and good teaching. Give them those things and they will be happier in your class.
They want to know they're learning and moving forward. Give them a means for knowing whether or not they're getting smarter - give them a means for knowing whether or not they're growing. Respect who they are as people and give them a fair system. Give them predictability in terms of what you expect and how you'll treat them.
Relationships take time to develop. It also often has to do with what they're living with at home. With how much trust did they show up at school today? Are they hungry? Are they tired? Do they live in multiple homes? Do they have a home? These are all factors that affect how they respond at school. Give them a safe environment - again - high predictability.
You'll be fine - just use good teaching practices - the relationships will come.
One of my main goals is creating a positive classroom climate. That was my area of study in my master's program because it is so important to me. I think you have already gotten a lot of great advice on how to do that. I would add that collaboration is also important in doing so. This means collaboration between students and teacher, as well as between students. Respect is an important aspect to a positive classroom climate, but the respect should be mutual as well.
One of the best teachers at our school was told by a parent that her daughter is learning lots, but doens't like her one bit. The teacher's response was priceless: "My job isn't to get your daughter to like me." I refer back to that often.
The biggest mistake a teacher can make is worry about if their kids like them. If you try to be their friend and get them to like you- they'll run you over and then they will be in control of you and the classroom.
If you worry about having control of the classroom and focus on making sure they are learning academics, along with how to be productive citizens of the school/world, that like will come along.
I made that mistake my first year of teaching, but then I fixed it after a few weeks. In the following years of teaching, I went in with the attitude that they don't need to like me- and you know what? A lot of them didn't act like it, but their hugs, letters, pictures, and especially seeing their smiles in the hall the next year- I knew deep down they loved and appreciated the way I taught.
So reorganized your priorities or you'll soon be posting that you have no control over your room and how do you fix that.
at my school, the only teachers kid "love" are those that don't make them work hard, that are easy to get "off topic" and don't have challenging material. Of course, those are the same kids that consistently do poorly on the california standards test, and when you ask them about it, they say, "well I had teacher X...what do you expect?" Focus on what Alice said, work on being fair, consistent, and trying to get them to learn the material in a supportive environment. OF COURSE they don't want to focus or learn, most high school kids don't, and would rather mess around...didn't you in high school? But, it's your job to help them learn, and, as Alice said, one of the best ways is to be fair and consistent. if you can look at yourself and tell yourself that you have been fair, then believe me, the kids will take notice. They may not always like you or your class anyway, but they will respect you. Good luck!
On the other hand, if you're aiming for a teaching method that works with student emotion, you might want to check out Teaching with Love and Logic. Because of my educational medium, this method works for me where Whole Brain Teaching does not (I can't do gestures without turning on my webcam).
I think it is important, to an extent, for kids to like their teacher. Depending on the grade, you may spend the entire day together, which can make for a long one if they don't like you.
I learned a big lesson last year: consistency. Kids want to know that you are being fair, and they want to feel safe. If you explain the expectations, and then don't follow through, they are going to think you're a joke.
I'm friendly with my students, but I am not their friend. They need someone who will structure their day, guide their learning, be fair and equitable, celebrate their successes, redirect their failures, and help them become better people in the year they spend with me. They don't need to love me and my success with them is not dependent upon my feeling loved.
Respect should be your #1 priority (at least in my mind) not bring friends and having them like you.
I still believe that, while it isn't necessary for students to love their teachers, it may be used as a way to make the students feel accountable for their classroom. You don't have to be the best buddy of the kids for this to work, nor should you, but raising their emotional intelligence may be beneficial, especially for those who have a deficit of adults on whom they can rely.
<<The biggest mistake a teacher can make is worry about if their kids like them. >>
I'd say the biggest mistake a teacher can make is assuming student perception of them has nothing to do with their success.
The kids have to respect you if you want to have any shot at success. Without that respect, they'll misbehave the moment you turn your back or let down your guard. You'll spend a year on high alert.
So, yes, you've got to earn their respect. I think that, for me at least, that's a matter of letting them know that I know my stuff, they're going to get an education in my class. And that, aside from the content, I realize that they're people too. I like them and respect them, and for the most part they reciprocate.
So not everyone likes me. I can live with that. But I think the overwhelming number DO like me, and do respect me.
As a result, classroom management really isn't much of an issue.
I'm pretty sure this is what the OP was going for. She's not looking to get invited to a lot of birthday parties, just trying to connect better with the kids.
Is that correct Laura007?
I'm also curious as to what grade you are teaching. Is this your first year? One of the things you may need to work on is your relationship with your students. A lot of new teachers come in really wanting to be liked by their students. What you learn thereafter is that being respected is more important. I do get to know my kids and I use that to make connections with my kids. I use their interests in my lessons (when I can) or just to talk to them during free time. I've gotten along with some of the most "difficult" students in the school because I took the time to connect with them and to show them that I care and respect them.
I've been teaching for 6 years now and I can tell you that my students respect me and many do like me because I am fair, consistent, nice, firm, caring, and I teach with passion.
Why do you want your students to all love you? That's such a waste of your time and energy. I do not care if any of my students love me. In fact, I don't know if any do or not. I have several that say they do every day. But who knows if they really do or not.
Like I have told my students a few times, if I worried about my students' opinions about me I wouldn't have enough time to prepare the class for them every day. It isn't my job to be their friend.
I'm pretty sure that I fit a pretty general bell-shaped curve. I probably have as many students that hate me as I do that love me. I imagine the vast majority are in my class to get the job done. Just like I am
The first 2 months of my first year were incredibly difficult. I came home to my parents in tears one night because my day was awful. I remember listing all the terrible things and then just bawling that my kids didn't even hug me!
Of course, now I know that I was being totally irrational and I had other issues that I was dealing with. What I am saying is that your perception may be a little off. You're under a ton of stress and sometimes your vision can get cloudy!
Also, you have to remember that sometimes, kids are taught to have no trust in their teacher and that they do not have to listen to you from home. So just teach--loving you is not required, although it is nice!
What makes you feel they don't love you?
Some teachers have a report with their students in a way that their mutual love for each other is apparent. Others do not have the report, but the love is there nonetheless.
My classes love me. Not because I am easy, because I am not. They love me because I love them and I show it in a million ways. One of those ways is the aforementioned fairness and consistency. Another is that they know the discipline that comes is in love and in the spirit of helping them find greater achievement as a student and as a person.
If it is just that the kids don't run up and greet you and they do the other teachers, then perhaps you are not the kind of person who oozes friendliness. My team teacher is very much loved by the classes we share, but she does not ooze friendliness. She is shy by nature. I am a bubbly, outgoing friendly person and the kids respond to that. However, I am not more loved than she.
If it is that students give notes of affection to your coworkers and not you, then can it be that you don't show that you value them? (For example, I receive notes and pics and the like and always display them or write thank you notes. They KNOW I value their time and love. I show them they matter in the way I listen to them and root for them and speak with them.)
I'm shooting in the dark since you gave so little info, so if I am off base, I apologize.
Dec 1, 2010
"Fair means that I realize that my class is NOT the only priority in their lives. My kids are allowed to miss, then make up without penalty, up to 3 homeworks per marking period. (Sometimes life gets in the way of homework, and I would prefer a makeup to having them copy it in homeroom.) Also, my kids and their parents all know that I have a 20 minute rule for homework-- at the end of 20 minutes, they can close the math book. No 15 year old should be up until 2 am trying to figure out math; they can always come to extra help instead."
Aliciacc, Does that HW they didn't finish in the 20 minutes become one of the 3 that they can turn in late (because it wasn't finished, so they cannot turn it in when it's due?)
Don't have time to read though everything posted already...But I will pass on the bit of advice that I was given when I started teaching. "When you find your name written on the bathroom walls/textbooks/desks/etc...You know you're doing your job!" Those are the kids who usually come back years down the road and say how much they appreciate what you did. I've only been teaching 6 years, but have had 2 or 3 come back years later and tell me how much they learned from me or how they FINALLY realize that I really did mean it when I told them how important it is to study.
Dec 2, 2010
There're so many wonderful answers that covered almost everything I wanted to say. The only thing I would like to add is that if you genuinely care about your students, it comes across and they will instantly like you more.
I won't necessarily say respect is more important than being liked because there is a teacher at my school who ALL her students respect, but she has been written up several times and is in hot water this year because one of her students had an anxiety/panic attack in the hallway because he was afraid to enter her classroom and experience the mental/verbal abuse that had been wearing on him each day.
I on the other hand jack up my students just as much as the abusive teacher, but even when they are getting on my last nerve, I treat them with the kindness I would want to be treated with, plus, as Alice said, I am FAIR.
Sure, all teachers may have some kids they favor over others, but even my so called "good" kids that never cause any trouble are held accountable for their actions if they get out of line.
And my so called "bad kids" who give me grief, I find SOMETHING to love about them and I still talk to them, call them sweetie and hun just as I do the others and take care of them.
That is fear which is very, very far away from respect.
That's true. I started typing and did not finish the thought. I was trying to use that teacher as an example of a teacher who is respected(that IS an extreme case, but there is a bit of fear that goes with respect I believe. ie: My kids fear they will dissapoint me and/or fear I will call their parents/take their recess, which gives them some respect for me).
However, though that teacher is feared/respected, her kids cannot stand her and that's why one had the panic attack. So to those people who were saying, "don't worry if they don't like you" i guess i was trying to say that being liked it important to.
I was talking to my Mom the other day and she told me that whenever I liked a teacher, I did well in his/her class. But if I came home and said I didn't like my teacher, then my Mom said she knew it was just a matter of time before I would start flunking and doing poorly.
I'm fair, thorough, and have extremely high expectations from all my students. I teach second and my campus has just 2nd and 3rd grade students. I have found that I love the students that I had last year more this year, since I don't have them this year. We knew we loved each other, but there was a level of expectations that had to be maintained. When I see them in the hall now it's a lot lighter feeling.
Dec 4, 2010
Sorry, I was away and didn't see this.
Nope, they're 2 different things. Homework is done after 20 minutes. Whether it's complete or not, it's done. Of course, if it's consistently unfinished, I'm going to be pretty vocal about expecting to see the kid at extra help. But that's rarely necessary; my kids are pretty good about attending extra help before they fall too far behind. I give it every morning and every afternoon, so it's not a huge inconvenience to stop by. And I'm happy to write a note explaining why they were late for practice or an activity.
The 3 misses are for homework that wasn't even attempted.
I can't imagine the phrases "mental/verbal abuse" and "respect" being used to describe the same teacher, even on a bad day.
During my student teaching, I had one kid who took a personal dislike to me. I struggled with his behavior the entire time and we eventually ended up in a parent/principal/student/teacher conference.
On the other hand, I had another student who still runs up and hugs me anytime she sees me in or out of school.
Overall, I think all of my students do respect and like me. Even the one that gave me so much grief during my ST treated me with grudging respect when I returned to sub for the class a couple of times. In return, I went out of my way to let him know our "past" was behind us and we were starting with a clean slate.
I do believe it helps if the students like the teacher in addition to respecting them. But if the teacher is FAIR (as Alice pointed out) and genuinely CARES about their students in and out of the classroom, the respect and like should take care of itself.
I had a college professor that was extremely demanding and came across with a very stern demeanor, but he told us his expectations and requirements on the first day and never waivered from them for anyone. Our group projects in his class were usually painted in red ink when we got them back, but the 96 and 98 I got on my individual midterm and final papers in his class were the two grades I was most proud of during my entire college career.
I think you do have to hold kids to high expectations in order to show them how much they CAN do. Colin Powell once remarked that he never had a soldier volunteer for a 20-mile hike in full gear during the middle of summer, but he did have several soldiers thank him AFTER the hike for making them push past the limits of what they thought they could do.
So, be fair, be consistent, require (and expect) the BEST from your students and let them know you care about them as a little person rather than a number in a seat and you WILL get the respect and love from them that makes teaching one of the greatest jobs in the world.
Maybe you're trying too hard? I know that my first year, I felt that having them love me was paramount. Now I know that if I am the best teacher I can be, (firm, fair, consistent, compassionate, knowledgeable) I will love myself which is so much more important (though it increases the chance that they will love you, too).
I honestly don't know if my students love me. However, I try to make sure they know how much I care about them. It's the best I can do.
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