How I Build Relationships with My Students in Just One Hour

January 20, 2019 No Comments

How I Build Relationships with My Students in Just One Hour

January 20, 2019 No Comments
My absolute favorite part about being a teacher is the relationships that I get to build with my students.  Strong relationships are something that I pride myself on as a teacher and I am constantly working on building those relationships.  At my previous school, it was super easy to build those relationships.  I lived and worked in the same neighborhood, so volunteering after school was an activity that I did often and I was able to spend tons of quality time with my students (and coworkers) outside of the school day.  In addition, I saw my students out of the school building all the time.  I would run into them at the grocery store, parks, and restaurants and I absolutely LOVED hearing my name being yelled when I was out somewhere.

Since I moved schools and I live almost a half hour from my current school, building relationships with my students and their families have been more difficult.  In fact, it has made teaching almost unbearable, though I’ve made a strong effort to change that this year.  The first step that I took was moving from teaching third grade to fifth grade.  I knew that I would have many of the same students for a second round, so I was ecstatic to make the jump and continue building those relationships that we started in third grade.  That move was only the tip of the iceberg, however.

At the beginning of the school year, I told my students about how my husband and I enjoy playing table-top role-playing games (RPGs) like Dungeons and Dragons.  While some of them laughed at my nerdy-ness, more of them were intrigued about what roleplaying games were and how you play them.  I’m not going to lie, I indulged them every question because I absolutely LOVE talking about it!  Soon after, they started begging me to teach them how to play during our short 20-minute recess block.

If you know anything about table-top RPGs, you know it is impossible to play during a 20 minute period, so I recruited my husband we started an after-school RPG club for 4th and 5th-grade students at my school.  We spend an hour a week playing a watered down version of the Pathfinder game.  We use a simplified character sheet that I found online and spent a couple of sessions introducing races and classes, as well as building characters before we split the 24 kids into two groups to start campaigning.

One hour a week has made all the difference.  For the last 4 months, I have been spending time with my students – inside and outside of the school day – discussing and playing a game that we both love.  I get to use my creative juices as the game master (which I’d never done before!) and my students get to build their critical thinking, imagination, and teamwork skills.  It has changed the way that I interact with my students the classroom, it has changed my enthusiasm for going to work, and it’s given my husband a chance to feel connected to my work as a teacher and spend time with the students I can’t stop talking about.  It’s a win-win for everyone involved.

Maybe table-top RPGs are not your jam and, maybe, you struggle to find the time to volunteer after school, but I challenge you with this:  Find something that you and your students can connect through.  Maybe it’s an afterschool art club or board game club.  Maybe you want to have a short before school coffee chat (with hot chocolate for the kiddos, of course!) or a writing club. Find something that creates a true, genuine connection and builds lasting relationships with your students, so that when they look back on their time with you, they remember how much they enjoyed being with you.

sherylwoods

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About Me

About Me

Hi! My name is Sheryl and I am so thankful you've found your way to the TeacherLadyKY blog! I'm an elementary educator from Louisville, Kentucky who is passionate about building relationships and literacy skills with my students. I've taught everything from kindergarten to fifth grade and I can't wait to share my experiences with you! Enjoy! Read More

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  • One of my colleagues shared this with me today. He meant it about my students, but he doesn't realize how much it resonated with me personally.
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It's no secret I've been broken lately. It's felt like destruction, but I'm slowly breaking the surface and recognizing the growth and potential that like ahead.
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#teacherbsn #teacherladyky #teachersofinstagram #teachertribe #ecet2 #growth
  • When you want the attention from the dog, but he's pretending you don't exist. "Here, Crow! Catch!" She's also a big fan of the phrases: "Where'd he go? Where's Crow? Good boy! and Come here, Crow!" 😍
  • For one of our morning journal prompts this week, I asked my students, "If you could change one thing about the way Mrs. Woods teaches, what would it be?"
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First of all, they were way too nice. Even my most outspoken students said I should change nothing because I was perfect... Including this sweet girl. Once I told them they were too nice, she changed nothing to "1 thing" and added the last sentence. She's not wrong... I am messy. (And I always tell them there is a scientific study that says the smartest people are the messiest.... There is. Don't come @ me.)
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Other honorable mentions include "If I could change one thing, it might be that she wears fancy clothes every day instead of those normal ones." #PointTaken .
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#teacherbsn #teacherladyky #teacherblogger #teacherlife #classroom #classroommanagement #buildrelationships #studentteacherrelationship #studentfeedback #teacherfeedback #writing #writingprompts
  • In case you needed to hear this today.
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One day at a time. One moment at a time. One task at a time. One necessity at a time. And, little by little, you will get there.
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The anxiety has been high for the last week. I've spent 5 out of the last 7 days in tears for reasons that should be considered miniscule. Everything bothers me.
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But, I have a mission and I won't stop until I'm there, even on days when it feel like tomorrow is miles away.  #besavagenotaverage #teachersofinstagram #teacherladyky #teacherblogger #teacherbsn #anxiety #mentalhealth
  • The past 24 hours have been fast-paced and brain-draining and anxiety-inducing, but it has been so, so good. My cup is so full after #SecondCTEPS. I am beyond grateful for the people in this photograph, who were strangers a few months ago and yet have laughed and cried with me like only the best of friends do. #Penguins #PenguinGang #TLKY #KentuckyTeacherLeaders @KyCTEPS
  • Today was a good day. A really good day. ❤️
  • Last night's pizza before it went into the oven. Mozzarella cheese pearls, pepperoni, pepperocinis, spinach, and roasted tomatoes on a 90 calorie flat bread. It was SO GOOD and so easy to make. What's your go-to easy dinner? We need some ideas! Let me know! 👇👇
  • The anxiety has been crippling this weekend.
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I stayed in bed/on the couch most of the weekend. I did hardly anything productive and only left the house because I literally had to. But I did some journaling and set up my February spreads and it made me feel a little better. I'll share them later this week.
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In case you thought you were alone, you're not. I'm right here with you.
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#bujoideas #bujoinspiration #bujo #bujoweeklyspread #bulletjournal #bulletjournaling #planneraddict #januarybulletjournal #polarbear #mentalhealth #mentalhealthawareness #anxiety
  • This week's #bulletjournal setup. Usually, I do a day at a time, but after binge watching see @amandarachlee on YouTube this weekend, I thought I'd set it all up at once. One thing I love about my #bujo is that I can do WHATEVER I want, WHENEVER I want to. 😁
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#bulletjournals #bulletjournaling #bujoweeklyspread  #bujoideas #bujoinspiration #penguins

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The TeacherLadyKY blog header and logo were designed by Sheryl, using fonts from A Primary Kind of Life and Brittney Murphy Design.  Clip art is courtesy of Irina Bandyk, whose Etsy shop is WatercolorCliparts.  The blog theme used is Emilia by Georgia Lou Studios.

 

 

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