By Elena Barker
Think back on your childhood for a moment. Chances are you had one or two teachers who helped you grow into the amazing educator you are today. You probably had a great rapport, or a relationship built on trust and understanding with those teachers.
Now that you are the teacher, you’ll want to follow in their footsteps. So, what can you do to build rapport with a student? Although it’s not an exact science, we offer the following four positive actions you can take:
Deep down, everyone just wants to be heard and appreciated for who they are. Keep this in mind and remember to validate your student’s emotions whenever possible. If a child becomes upset during a session, you could say: “I know this must be frustrating for you. Let’s take a break for a minute.”
Nobody is perfect. When your student makes a mistake, use it as a learning opportunity and offer your full forgiveness. By doing so, your students will know it’s OK to make mistakes in front of you. Likewise, apologizing to your students when appropriate can open the door to trust and understanding.
If you can, use humor to create an atmosphere of fun in your classroom. Keep the jokes light, and don’t use them to demean anyone.
Relationships take time to build, and it’s not always easy to connect with a student. When that happens, talk to the people who know your student best. They might just have some great tips for you!
Are there any rapport-building tips we missed? What’s worked for you in the past? Let us know in the comments below!