Students all over the country enter our schools every day, to receive an education that society has designed to create the foundation for their own jumpstart for success. They sit down, they smile, they trust, they feel secure and safe. However, the same smiles we see are often mask of true feelings, true struggles, and true reality of what is really going on in their heads.
There are some students that are so troubled, and that gets pushed along as a behavior concern, ADHD, or just too far gone. Nevertheless, how many of these same students are the ones that try to find the inner strength to carry on from day to day.
Some of these particular students, only have the meals within school hours, deal with raising themselves, and don’t know who their parents really are because they walked out of their lives before they could even realize that that were mom and dad. Or they are the students that sit in the back of the room quietly, because they are trying to figure out how they are going to drown out the noise of arguments occurring in the room next, door night after night, so they can focus of the “Big Test”. Yet, a test is the last thing on their mind, instead, they are wondering if it will be the night they are taken away for good by CPS.
See our student are being pressure cooked, regardless of ethnicity, culture, or economic status. They are being pushed to grow up, take responsibility, and mentally handle the pressure of adult decisions. In other words, they are required to “cook fast”, similar to a dinner in a pressure cooker. However, many times the process creates mental imbalances, that are beyond the control of the child.
Students are crying out for stability, connection, and reassurance. It doesn’t matter if they are in Kindergarten or entering their senior year, all they want is an advocate that is willing to listen, and protect their childhood.
Instead, our schools have created a pattern of strapped time and pressure cooked academic methodologies, that hinders the development of relationship building. Furthermore, some educators believe there is no time or reason to build quality relationships with EVERY student. Although, studies show that quality relationship building helps support the whole child.
A study conducted by, National Center for Education Statistics, shows that building positive relationships with students, within the learning environment enhances social and academic results. (Cataldi & KewallRamani, 2009) In fact, a researcher by the name of Marzano (2003) said it best, “Don’t leave relationships up to chance” (p.9).
With research-based studies about the positive impact of relationships being conducted daily across all spectrum of education, it is time for true implementation. The adoption of solid relationships based programs that support academic achievement is not just a want, it is a need. Quality relationship building impacts more than what the eye can see...
Quality relationships can prevent a grade retention or dropout
Quality relationships can prevent that adolescent suicide
Quality relationships have the ability to recognize the first signs of mental instability, and allows for help to intervene
Quality relationships helps recognize that learning disability before it fully develops
Quality relationships give hope, builds passion and allows students that they have a cheerleader in their corner rooting them along the way.
Quality relationships even support the child beyond the wall of the schoolhouse
21st century learning requires a different approach, and it starts with relationships. As, Prospective180 likes to say, “In Signature Not Print”.
For more information on how to support the students beyond the walls contact us via phone/email: (832) 510-4697 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Cataldi, E. F., Laird, J., & Kewalramani, A. (2009). High school dropout and completion rates in the United States: 2007 (NCES
2009-064). Washington, DC:National Center for Education Statistics,Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of
Marzano, R. J. & Marzano, J.S. (2003). Building Classroom Relationships. Educational Leadership, 61:1, 6-13.