It doesn’t matter whether you’re a brand new teacher or are about to retire, I think, deep down, all of us want our students to like us.
The problem, though, is that many teachers make the mistake of focusing on that desire and trying to be the “cool teacher.” And normally when that happens, they end up with a mess on their hands.
Ironically, if you try to get your students to like you by being their friend or by being cool and hip, that normally ends up backfiring.
So what should you do? Well, I’m glad you asked.
5 Ways to Get Your Students to Like You
- Don’t worry about whether or not they like you. Yes, you heard right. If you want your students to like you, don’t worry about it. You can’t be seeking their approval, and you can’t be worried about what they think. If you do, you’ll end up making some very poor decisions, and your students will end up thinking you’re a big pushover. And they probably won’t like you.
- Gain their respect. Instead of trying to get them to like you, work to get them to respect you. Be an excellent teacher. Learn how to manage your classroom well. Have high expectations. Hold them accountable. Gain their respect, and they’ll probably look back at you and say, “Wow, s/he was a great teacher!”
- Show them you care. Show a student that you genuinely care about them, and he will love you forever. Don’t believe me? Think back to your all-time favorite teachers. You knew they cared about you, didn’t you? So do the same things for your students. For some ideas how to do that, check out my post “How to Show Real Love to the Kids”)
- Be genuine. Kids can spot a phony really quickly, so don’t try to be something you’re not. Instead, be yourself. Be genuine. And admit your mistakes.
- Be passionate about your subject matter. When you love your subject and make it come alive for your students, they will not only learn a whole lot more but you’ll probably also overhear a few of them saying, “I love Mr/s. So-and-So’s class!”
If you feel like you need some help figuring out how to get your kids to listen and respect you, check out our online course that helps you create a full classroom management plan. Find out more about Classroom Management 101 here.
You can also check out our book Create Your Dream Classroom and the article “10 Keys to a Controlled, Effective Classroom.”
Have you ever focused on getting your kids to like you instead of earning their respect? Share your experience with a comment below.
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This was a very helpful article! Thank you! I find that being consistest and kind helps, too!