The Impact and Importance of Positive Student-Teacher Relationships
The relationship between student and teacher plays a large role in the trajectory of a child’s academic success and social development. Establishing a positive relationship with their teacher helps a student feel more comfortable and safe in their classroom environments.
As a result, students are more likely to participate actively in class and challenge themselves academically. Studies show that teachers who feel engaged by passionate students who proactively work at their relationships with them grade a full grade higher than others. It pays to pursue a strong relationship with a teacher from the first day of school.
The student/teacher relationship is a cornerstone in a student’s social maturation process. Cultivating a positive rapport with a non-parental authority figure allows students to define themselves, adapt to their environment and grow their emotional and social intelligence. It takes guts and determination to address a teacher privately and let them know how much doing well in the classroom matters to them and teachers value that outreach and display of maturity.
According to Peter Riddle, 37-year education expert and founder of ELTC, “Positive relationships with teachers become game changers for kids. As a 37-year learning specialist, I have worked with thousands of children – many of whom are initially stressed out A students, while others struggle for Bs and Cs. I have worked with thousands of youngsters and adults with learning and behavior disorders. The common thread with all of these people is that emotional intelligence increases when individuals are challenged to perform and function at their very best in the midst of a safe, structured environment.”
For the child who struggles in school, having a good relationship with their teachers is critical to their success. It’s not uncommon for kids who struggle academically to have the most challenging relationships with their teachers, which just furthers their issues with performance. Peter went on to say, “Whenever I work with this type of student, I will convince the student to work on building the relationships with their teachers daily, helping them engage the teacher in a positive way to earn the extra scores that come from a good relationship with teachers. All of my interaction starts with talking about the relationship with teachers and ways to improve them.”
Changing your child’s attitude and beliefs about their relationship with their teachers is the single most important thing you can do to improve your child’s education.