Kid Whisperer Nation Teacher Tip #31
GIVE STUDENTS YOUR (LIMITED) TIME
Teachers today are asked to do an impossible job and are not given anywhere close to enough time in which to do it. That being said, taking time to go to lunch or P.E. with your students, even if it’s only twice a month, will build relationships like little else will. The bit of energy used to take that time will be given back tenfold. Kids are much less likely to cause problems for you if you just hit them with a dodgeball in gym class!
Kid Whisperer Nation Teacher Tip #32
TAKE TIME OUT OF SCHOOL
I know that this may sound ridiculous since you already spend every waking second either teaching or grading papers, but if you do it the right way, you can build relationships with lots of kids all at the same time. Don’t just go to one kid’s basketball game. Find the team that a bunch of kids are a part of and go to that game. Hopefully, the team has cheerleaders who are also in your class. Sit up front and scream your head off. Make sure everyone knows that you are there. Grade papers during timeouts. This will bond you to kids and give their parents an idea of how much you do outside of school.
Kid Whisperer Nation Teacher Tip #33
GO TO KIDS’ HOMES
This may sound daunting considering the fact you are already working 80 hours a week, but if you do it in a smart way, you will get the energy and time back that you put toward this. Pick the three kids in your room who need a breakthrough relationship with a teacher the most. Preferably before school starts, go to a kid’s home just to get to know the family. Don’t talk about the school year unless someone else brings it up and don’t mention any problems the kid has had in the past. Just try to shake some hands, pet the cat, drink a glass of their water, and relax. Only stay for five to ten minutes. Just get to know the family. It will be significantly more difficult for the parents or the kid to be disrespectful to you throughout the year once they have seen you sitting on their couch!
Kid Whisperer Nation Teacher Tip #34
MAKE POSITIVE PHONE CALLS HOME
Choose a few of the most difficult kids in your room. Wait for them to have a day when they don’t exhibit any really negative behaviors (this is easier during the first week of school). Call their parents to tell them how great you think their kid is.
*Hint: Start the phone conversation by stating who you are and then pause. This will give the parent or caregiver the opportunity to say something like, “Oh, Lord. What did he do now?” Then you can act surprised and tell the parent how awesome their kid is. This will greatly increase the chances that you will start on the right foot with that family!
Kid Whisperer Nation Teacher Tip #35
PLAY DUMB WITH ANGRY PARENTS
When a parent is angry about something, do not give your opinion or any facts about the situation in question. Allow the parent to burn herself out with every bit of anger that she has. Only when she has exhausted herself should you ask if she would like your perspective on the matter, and only then should you give it.