Although most research regarding teacher-student relationships investigate the bonds with students, classrooms become supportive spaces in which students can engage in .. Journal of personality and social psychology, (6), Positive teacher-student relationships promote a sense of school belonging and Establishing a positive and supportive classroom environment, combined with Emily Gallagher published an article that sites further research into the effect of . Teachers with strong teacher student relationships have more impact on relationship with your students, they are more likely feel positive about class and In her article 12 Things Kids Want From Their Teachers, she describes how she.
The second generation of research on teacher-student relationships is well underway. In this commentary, I highlight the ways in which the articles in this special issue contribute to these aims and describe the challenges ahead.
Although the quality of the mother-child attachment relationship and early teacher-student relationships is moderately consistent, these authors point out that the concordance between mother-child and teacher-child relationship security weakens as students advance to higher grades.
Furthermore, the quality of the teacher-student relationship depends not only on what the child brings to the relationship, in terms of mental representations of relationships with caregivers and interpersonal competencies, but also on what the teacher brings to the relationship and the teacher-student daily interactions.
Their call for an expanded attachment perspective on teacher-student relationship concordance that incorporates multiple and interactive influences across development is effectively answered by four articles in this series. Supportive and close relationships with teachers were also linked to positive peer relationships, which were linked to positive perceived social competence.
Of particular interest is the finding of differential effects of two dimensions of teacher-student relationship quality, conflict and closeness, on trajectories for externalizing and internalizing behaviors. Their findings also underscore the importance of a person-centered approach to understanding teacher-student relationships across the elementary school years.
The effect of conflict trajectory classes on academic functioning was recently investigated by Spilt, Hughes, Wu, and Kwok in press. Specifically, first grade children in classrooms with low levels of provision of teacher emotional support were more likely to exhibit a proximal-dependent profile of teacher relatedness, a profile that maps onto anxious ambivalent attachment styles.
A close and supportive relationship with the teachers presumably serves as external source of stress regulation, allowing children to direct their energies toward engagement with tasks, peers, and teachers in the classroom.
Ahnert and colleagues provide clear and convincing evidence that the provision of a supportive teacher relationship serves this purpose. Specifically, children provided with a supportive learning environment in first grade evinced diurnal and weekly patterns of salivary cortisol indicative of effective stress regulation. Given the well-established effects of stress on learning Blair,these results provide strong evidence for the academic benefit of the provision of an emotionally positive learning environment.
An attachment-informed, reflection-focused model of teacher professional development Spilt, Koomen, Thijs, and van der Leij answer the widely voiced call for the development and evaluation of theoretically informed interventions to improve teacher-student relationships.
The reflection-focused intervention, however, was less effective than the interpersonal skills intervention in reducing teacher-perceived relational conflict. Teachers in the reflection-focused intervention, but not in the interpersonal competence intervention, varied in slope for teacher-rated closeness and conflict. In the case of teacher-student conflict, higher teacher self-efficacy predicted decreasing conflict. More theoretically informed research that addresses teacher characteristics as a moderator of intervention responsiveness is needed.
Challenges for Second Generation Research on Teacher-Student Relationships Integration of multiple theoretical perspectives As noted by Sabol and Piantateacher-student interactions are likely the result of multiple and interactive influences. Attachment theory has proven its value in establishing the role of maternal attachment security on teacher-student relationships at the transition to elementary school.
One challenge is to identify specific, theoretically informed processes that account for the dynamic relations between teacher-student relationships, child characteristics, and the classroom context.
Adopt a broader contextual view of teacher-student relationships Teacher-student interactions have been studied, for the most part, in isolation from other teacher behaviors, or instructional practices. Classrooms are complex systems of interactions, and social and instructional features likely influence each other and interact in complex ways. Classroom goal structures refer to messages in the learning environment, particularly teacher practices that make certain achievement goals salient Ames, These findings support the view that the provision of challenging instruction with adequate supports for learning is one way teachers communicate their concern and respect for students Nodding, Develop teacher-student relationship interventions at both the dyadic and classroom level More attention has focused on interventions designed to improve teaching practices at the classroom level than at the dyadic level.
Although classroom-level interventions likely result in improvement at the dyadic level, problematic teacher-student relationships may exist in classrooms with generally positive climates. Spilt and colleagues addresses the need for interventions focused on troubled dyadic relationships.
A possible limitation of interventions at the dyadic level is the lack of willingness on the part of schools to invest in interventions that are focused on a single student.
Evidence that such interventions result in improved teacher knowledge and skills that teachers apply to their interactions with other students will be essential to building teacher and administrator support for them.
Utilize sophisticated, longitudinal research designs The complexity of teacher-student relationships requires not only multiple theories but also longitudinal research designs capable of clarifying causal processes, including reciprocal and cascading processes. These researchers found that youth who reported more conflict in their relationships with teachers at ages 14 were more likely at age 15 and 17 to engage in risky sexual behavior.
Although this interpretation is plausible, the design does not permit such a conclusion, as factors that predict both teacher-student conflict and risky sexual behavior e. That is, the measure of teacher-student conflict could be a marker of poor behavioral and academic risk for sexual risk taking rather than a cause. These authors call for the development of measures that span elementary and secondary levels, to permit investigation of change and growth in relationships across developmental transitions as well as variations in mechanisms by which teacher relatedness influences school outcomes.
Studies of teacher-student relationship quality across a number of years can also shed light on variations in its effects at different developmental periods. The lack of measures of teacher-student relatedness appropriate across the elementary and middle schools is an obstacle to such studies. Although interventions that provide context-embedded, individualized feedback anchored in specific teaching behaviors have demonstrated efficacy, knowledge of the active ingredients of these interventions is lacking.
For example, what consultant behaviors predict improvement in teacher behaviors? Reliable and valid measures of consultation processes e. Such evidence would inform the preparation of teacher consultants. I offer three recommendations for application. Second, assessment of teacher-student relationships should be a standard component of strategies to identify students at risk for social and academic difficulties.
Schools should implement programs for screening troubled relationships, especially in the early grades, and to support teachers in improving troubled relationships. Third, school reform efforts should include measures of teacher-student relationships in evaluations of teacher performance. A number of approaches to assessing teacher-student relationship quality have yielded good evidence of reliability and construct validity. The articles also point toward the need for additional research, in order to ensure that all students are provided the social and emotional supports at school that are critical to their full and positive participation in school.
Both the encouragement and the direction are much appreciated. Student-teacher relationships and classroom climate in first grade: Attachment and Human Development. An interaction-based approach to enhancing secondary school instruction and student achievement.
Goals, structures, and student motivation.Classroom Management Building Relationships
Journal of Educational Psychology. Directly controlling teacher behaviors as predictors of poor motivation and engagement in girls and boys: The role of anger and anxiety. Students who perceive that their teachers have high expectations of their academic achievement are more motivated to try to meet those expectations and perform better academically than their peers who perceive low expectations from their teachers Muller et al. Furthermore, teacher-student relationships have an impact on the academic self-esteem of students Ryan et al.
High-poverty students often have low academic self-esteem and low confidence in their academic and vocational futures Wentzel, Thus, positive relationships with teachers are important in supporting higher levels of self-esteem, higher academic self-efficacy, and more confidence in future employment outcomes Ryan et al. In addition to academic achievement, positive teacher-student relationships provide important social outcomes for students.
Social Outcomes Although there is more research regarding the academic effects of positive teacher-student relationships for older students, there are notable social outcomes as well.
Teachers are an important source of social capital for students Muller, Social capital in a classroom setting is defined as caring teacher-student relationships where students feel that they are both cared for and expected to succeed Muller, Social capital from positive teacher-student relationships can manifest itself in many different ways. Further, teacher-student relationships can impact peer relationships in schools.
Teacher-Student Relationships and School Adjustment: Progress and Remaining Challenges
Teacher-student relationships can have a significant effect on the peer acceptance of students. Conflicting interactions between teachers and students may convey a lack of acceptance, causing other students to also reject the student involved in the conflict with the teacher Hughes et al. Peer rejection significantly impacts self-esteem of students leading to several negative social outcomes Hughes et al. As mentioned earlier, students with high self-esteem are more likely to be self-efficacious and set higher goals Ryan et al.
Students with high self-esteem are more likely to have positive relationships with peers as well as with adults Orth et al. Self-esteem is especially important during adolescence and helps students develop a positive sense of self Orth et al.
Teacher-Student Relationships and School Adjustment: Progress and Remaining Challenges
A positive sense of self in adolescence leads to future outcomes including relationship satisfaction, job satisfaction, occupational status, emotional regulation, and physical health Orth et al. The support of positive teacher-student relationships for self-esteem and related social outcomes affects students during schooling as well as in their future educational and occupational outcomes Orth et al.
Conclusion and Limitations Although there is extensive research on the positive effects of teacher-student relationships on elementary school students, there is little research on middle and high school students. Middle and high school is when students begin to think about their academic futures, which are informed by academic achievement and social capital in elementary years Alexander et al.
Early high school is usually when students dedicate themselves to graduating or decide to drop out Henry et al. Currently, high school dropout rates are high, and improving teacher-student relationships for students at this stage may decrease dropout rates Henry et al. Similarly, high school is when students decide if they plan to attend college or stop their education Alexander et al. Therefore, it is important to develop positive teacher-student relationships during this time.
Empirical evidence does show that teacher-student relationships are very important for high school students Alexander et al.
However, much of this research is dated.
Due to the ever-changing nature of the American educational system and the increasingly diverse student body, more current studies are needed to look at the effects of teacher-student relationships for this changing population.
Conducting research on the relationship between high school students and teachers may be essential in improving the outcomes of low-income middle and high school students, and can potentially inform future interventions to help older students perform better both academically and socially. From first grade forward: Early foundations of high school dropout.
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