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Simon Youd

Relationships not content are key to learning

2 min read

    I am currently tutoring a friend who wants to improve their math skills for a course they wish to do. She has a low belief in her current mathematical ability, yet when getting into work is quite capable. This low self-belief and then self-sabotaging thought processes has come from having a poor relationship with her high school math teacher. This relationship breakdown resulted in a low level of effort and a disengagement from the class and learning. This just reinforces how we as teachers need to ensure that we have positive relationships purposely built with our students which are a big engagement tool into out class and their learning.

Being a connected educator also means we connect in our classroom, not just outside.

    I build good relationships with most students in my class, yet know that I need to do and focus better on those who sit in the fringes of the class. The quiet recluse who does not interrupt, looks busy, and seems to have things under control. Yet if I took the time to develop that relationship purposefully then I can help them, and they feel a better connection to the class and their desire to learn the material. The ones that I don't build that relationship with then can struggle to gain maximum learning outcomes from their learning. This my responsibility and hat I really need to work at. Not just developing relationships with the easy outgoing students, but the quiet ones, who need to know you care, to help them know why they should care.