They are the key to peaceful, productive classrooms. They have the power to unlock students' abilities and motivation and to give teachers a platform from which to help students reach goals and experience success. Without solid, authentic relationships between teachers and students, a classroom can feel like a cage.
I've learned this the hard way by making mistakes with past students. I'm thankful for mistakes, though. I learn from them. And I carry what I've learned into my relationships with current students.
One nagging question I have about being a Middle School teacher is: Will I be able to cultivate relationships with all of my students? This question does not come from feeling insecure about my ability to build a rapport with students and a safe, loving classroom community. This question has every bit to do with the nature of a Middle School setting, the larger population of students I'll serve, and the schedule we'll be subjected to. Since I've learned how vital relationships are, I worry that a Middle School's program won't be conducive to establishing the kind of closeness I now enjoy with my students.
Instead of letting this question and worry burn an acidic hole through my outlook, I seek answers and assurance from colleagues. I look for resources that will aid my transition. I listen to discussions, I read books, and I try to envision what next school year will feel like. With mostly courage and curiosity, I look ahead to my professional future...and smile.
My name is