Magazine article AMLE Magazine

Mentor Me

Magazine article AMLE Magazine

Mentor Me

Article excerpt

The natural tendency is to tell students what to do, but simply telling them to improve their attitude is not going to provide the results you want. Remember how the teacher sounded in the Peanuts cartoons?

Take a minute to consider this: What are you doing to demonstrate the attitude and behavior you want them to develop?

Create the right culture. How are you shaping the culture that in turn shapes their attitude? During the first weeks of school, try doing a variety of teambuilding exercises with students. Focus on them as individuals, then on ways they should treat each other, and finally on their interactions with others in the school and in the community. When I was in the classroom, I made it a priority that students meet and learn about the school's support staff-the people who really make the school run smoothly.

Lead by example and by caring. If you want to change students' attitudes and behavior, lead by example.

How are you practicing the behavior you want them to exhibit?

* What did you do the first week of school to learn more about them?

* How do you greet them to start the day?

* Do you know all their names?

* Do you attend their extra-curricular activities?

* How have you connected with them outside school?

Caring plays a significant role in shaping the attitude students bring to class. When your students know you care about them, the next step is getting them to care about each other. It's hard to have a bad attitude when so much energy is spent taking care of each other. …

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