Monday, July 22, 2013

Can You Hear Me Now? Listening to Your Students' Behavior!

When I saw this photo posted on WeAreTeachers Facebook status, I had to share it. "The kids who want the most Love, will always ask for it in the most unloving of ways." It speaks to so many of our kids. It spoke to so many of the kids I have had over the last 28 years. Are we listening to their behavior? Do we hear what they are trying to tell us?

I know it is frustrating when a student disrespects you or disrupts your classroom. They may call you names, disrupt the class, torment other students, fight, any number of things. And it makes you angry. Sometimes, people forget that teachers are human too. That we have human reactions to students in our classroom, even though we are "the professionals".

Every year, I seem to have a student like that. I know there are teachers who have a number of students who fit this description. But I think it's in the best interest of  the student if we take a second and ask, "Why?" Sometimes, they aren't just being mean, nasty, human beings. Sometimes, there are things going on in their lives that make them want love, or help, from someone, and they don't know how to ask for it.

I have had students act out,and when you dig deeper, you find there are a number of reasons for their "unloving" behavior. There may be a history of sexual abuse, alcoholism in the home, neglect, homelessness, bullying, any number of issues that result in the child you see in your classroom. This child is just begging for love, but,  in a manner that is not acceptable in a classroom setting. (Sometimes there are no underlying issues, the kid is just like that, it happens).

Once, or if, you find out the reason this child is acting out, maybe you can help. Maybe you can change your attitude towards this child and help and/or love them. Hopefully, this will lead to a change in the child, I have seen it happen. Will it always work? No. Sometimes you just can't get through, but it's worth the effort.

When we start this new year, let's see if we can listen to our students, not only with our eyes and ears, but with our hearts as well.


  1. Thank you for this reminder. I definitely had a student who needed a lot of love last year!

    1. You are welcome! :)I hope the love you gave him/her helped!

  2. Thanks for this. I had one of those situations in the classroom today, and this is a comforting reminder for me!