Transforming A Tense Relationship Where There Is Low Respect Inspiration by Joel Wagner - November 2, 2007July 5, 20104 Recently, a reader wrote to me saying: I am currently midway through student teaching and am struggling with classroom management (surprise!). I am not really getting any feedback from my cooperating teacher, other than “use short, quick redirects” and “your emotions are too transparent to students”. I worked in business for 18 years prior to this experience and I’m just struggling with how to try and turn a tense situation around. I have read through the articles posted on this site and they have given me some good ideas to work with. Here is my question: What can you do to turn around a tense relationship with students who do not regard you as “the person in charge”? (I hear comments that because I am a student teacher, I am a “fake” teacher, what I do with students does not count, etc. ). Not surprisingly, I am really thinking that teaching might not be for me. Basically, my advice was: [H]ow do you calm tense relationships? I think the number one thing is to understand where the kids are coming from. In my situation, I teach middle school. So when my kids do something crazy, it’s usually because they are in middle school. It functions as an all-around excuse. But that, as well as these tips should help out quite a bit. So I thought I would present an opportunity for my readers to jump in and help a soon-to-be teacher. Pooling the combined amount of leadership and teaching experience of the 100+ readers of this blog, I’m sure we can come up with some great solutions! 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.