Less Stress: Deepen Your Relationships With Students Stress Reduction by Joel Wagner - October 24, 2007June 13, 20122 Wow. I love my students. I am amazed that I haven’t written more on my blog about this fact. As I search through my blog, I have come to the realization that I probably come across as some heartless disciplinarian who expects nothing more from his students than that they be quiet all the time. This is about as far from the truth as you can get. In fact, I love my students very much. I came to the determination three years ago that classroom management was a key element of demonstrating my love to them. You see, when we allow them to waste their education, we are showing unconcern for them rather than courtesy. One of my key scriptures as far as my educational philosophy is concerned is Proverbs 13:24. He who spares his rod hates his son, But he who loves him disciplines him promptly As you spend time teaching them proper behavior, no matter how much time you spend teaching them that, you will end up helping them function better in society at large. If we really love the kids, that is exactly what we want them to do. Behavioral correction is most effective when we keep a calm tone of voice and when you really try to empathize with the student. Explaining to them why they are wrong is vital. Similarly, helping them to come up with a reasonable solution to solve the problem helps to establish a deeper connection. I also make it a point as much as time allows to get out and see the students in other school activities. If I happen to hear a basketball game going on as I am leaving the school or whatever, I will make it a point to step in and see some of the game. Also just talking with the students before school, during lunch, between classes, whenever really helps to build relationships with them. One of the most rewarding things for me about teaching is getting to see the children grow up and develop into real human beings! I still stay in contact with a handful of people I have taught either as a private lesson teacher in college or as a full blown band director. I went to the funeral of a former student last November. Talk about a wake up call! I have also been invited to a wedding of two former students in December! I’m excited! Joel WagnerJoel Wagner (@sywtt) began teaching band in 2002. Though he had a lot of information, his classes were out of control. He found himself tired, frustrated, disrespected by students, lonely, and on the brink of quitting. He had had enough. He resigned from his school district right before spring break of his second year and made it his personal mission to learn to be a great teacher. So You Want To Teach? is the ongoing story of that quest for educational excellence.