My name is Sophie and I am a Sophomore.
Today I’d like to talk to you about the significance of teacher quality and relationships.
From the start of the school year, my math teacher established a comfortable rapport with each individual student. He began the year by giving us a Google form with questions to get to know us. He asked about our plans for the future which made me feel as though he would help support us meet our goals. He inquired about our personal lives in order to better grasp our needs and understand how he could help us succeed. That relationship and quality have really aided my ability to engage in class. This teacher does not speak to students as though they have power over them, but rather in a way that keeps the class engaged. If I have a question, I’m at ease asking the teacher or another classmate for help. For example, I recently got stuck on a problem about solving radical functions. I asked my teacher for help during class and I now understand the concept and feel prepared for the next level of material. I feel invested in the class and want to learn every day.
Teachers can also help foster positive relationships between students. In one of my classes, we played a game to share our passions and hobbies with the entire class. This helped me get to know everyone and feel more comfortable. In this classroom, students offer to show their own work and actively participate in class.
This trait only reveals itself in classrooms where I feel comfortable with both the teacher and the students. A number of my teachers jumped into work on the first day of school and haven’t engaged with kids since. When these teachers don’t take the time to get to know me, I have a hard time communicating with them. This makes working in the classroom much more difficult. I’ve noticed that I don’t learn as much or have the same work ethic.
I wish all of my classmates had the same opportunities to form positive relationships with teachers. I ask that you provide funding for Safe and Supportive Schools so that all classrooms can become welcoming learning environments. Thank you for your time and consideration.