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The Seven Languages of Respect for Teachers and Students

Reading – The Seven Languages of Respect

Share your experiences. When do you feel respected by your students? Is there something that you have implemented with your students that you feel has encouraged respect?

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Lyn R
29 days ago

I work with a team of teachers who teach a variety of students from young adults to more mature learners. There is no doubt that different approaches are required to build relationships, trust and respect among the different cohorts.

Michaela
1 month ago

I have recently restructured my approach to teaching my students (via virtual classroom) to try and improve outcomes for both the students and myself. As an older teacher) I was used to the 7 languages of respect for your teacher as outlined in the lecture. However, I found that these no longer work with the new generation of students and cause much frustration for both the students and teachers.
Using this different approach, which coincidently included many of the areas listed in “in the student’s language of respect”, significantly increased the engagement by students and we all enjoyed the classes a great deal more. Watching the lectures has confirmed that I am on the right track and now gives me the opportunity to incorporate the areas I had not addressed yet.

priya
2 months ago

I teach youth .I feel respected when they pay attention to me and engage in the class and follow the class rules

Paris Petelevitch
2 months ago

I teach adults, I feel respected by students when they greet me warmly, and are actively interested. We together create an agreement for the class, this includes their expectations of me and each other. This tends to encourage respect for all.

Michaela
1 month ago

I have also started creating an agreement with my classes, that includes what their expectations are of me and what I expect from them during our classes. It is a great rapport and respect builder for both the students and the teacher

Lene
3 months ago

This was such a good lecture/s for reflecting on my own teaching and expectations. Shift 2 about Perspective; a shift from Planning to Preparing was such a useful reminder, and I liked the expression “The future is MOSAIC”, it created pictures in my mind, both of the class room and the future.
The five languages of love being adapted for the classroom as The seven languages of respect was great. “Greeted warmly” was mentioned as the first language of respect and I learnt this from being a (yoga)student at a large studio, but where I always was greeted warmly, and I realised, and was surprised, how much this meant to me. So after this experience I have always (trying to) applied this to my own classroom and it works.

Lynda
3 months ago

I teach adults. I find that treating them as adult learners and giving them agency in their learning promotes a mutually respectful environment. I understand that they all have adult responsibilities: caring for family, juggling work and study, running a household – all on top of learning a new language and building a life in a new country. They don’t need to apologise if they have to leave early because a child is sick at school, or if they miss a day for personal reasons, but I do expect them to make the effort to catch themselves up in whatever they miss. It took me a little while to arrive at this point, but more often than not, it seems to work well.

Paris Petelevitch
2 months ago
Reply to  Lynda

I agree, flexibility is important.

Michaela
1 month ago
Reply to  Lynda

I also agree, not providing adult learners and to an extent TVET students with flexibility leads to very low completion rates.

Tao Tang
3 months ago

I feel respected when students follow my instructions without me repeating them many times. In another way, I feel respected when students actively engage.

To encourage students, particularly younger ones to respect their teacher, one of the most important things is to make it bidirectional. Students’ needs and individuality should be carefully considered by the teacher with inclusiveness. Especially when they find that you pay attention to and respect their individuality, and value their progress and contribution, they would think you are trustworthy. In turn, they will respect you in an organic manner.

Last edited 3 months ago by Tao Tang
Lynda
3 months ago
Reply to  Tao Tang

I feel respected when students actively engage too. Along with some of the others who have posted here, I also teach adult migrants. I’m very used to repeating instructions and explaining things in different ways. I don’t interpret student lack of understanding as an indicator of respect; I think this comes with the territory in my context.

Shaista Imran
6 months ago

My students are mainly adult migrants. After a brief introduction session, I point at how its such a mixed ability group in terms of ethnic background, first language, education and life experience. Based on this we expect that the class will move at different paces to suit everyone. I make them feel comfortable. Students understand this, seem to like it and by the end of the course/ semester, the class usually turns to a big friendly group where some automatically start to mentor others.

Tao Tang
3 months ago
Reply to  Shaista Imran

Thanks for sharing, Shaista. I totally agree that we need to make students feel welcomed and comfortable

Lynda
3 months ago
Reply to  Shaista Imran

Yes, I find it helpful to communicate that students have different strengths in the various skills. I think it helps reduce negative comparison.

Lene
3 months ago
Reply to  Shaista Imran

Thanks for sharing Shaista. I’m teaching adult migrants too, and yes, I find making the students comfortable is one of the most important things for an effective language learning environment. Thanks for the reminder about reminding students about not only national and cultural backgrounds, but also their life and educational background differences.

Poppy Conroy
7 months ago

I am also aware of modeling behavior and showing respect to all goes a long way. My students also benefit from their very first class when we talk about classroom expectations and how we will all support each other through the following semester. I find it sets the tone for the class to feel comfortable and inclusive.

Tao Tang
3 months ago
Reply to  Poppy Conroy

Yes, Poppy. Being inclusive is really crucial

priya
2 months ago
Reply to  Poppy Conroy

Well started is half done. Setting rules are important and we need to stick to it.

Lyn R
29 days ago
Reply to  Poppy Conroy

Agree Poppy, we can role model behaviours that build respect like actively engaging, seeking input and building learning frameworks that are collborative.

Poppy Conroy
7 months ago

I have always tried to model respect to my students by always making them feel welcomed when they come to class. Sharing stories at appropriate times also allows the students to see me as a real human being not just their teacher. In fact I find that this particularly works best with the most troubled students.

Paris Petelevitch
2 months ago
Reply to  Poppy Conroy

I agree Poppy, engagement that is authentic and allows vulnerability as has been mentioned is what the students now want in order to demonstrate we respect them.

Jo Hartley
7 months ago

I have always used the saying “it may not work out the way you want it to and it may not work out the way i want it to but i will always help you to the very best of my ability”. This has seemed to work well as it shows honesty, vulnerability and helps to build trust on a level playing field. I always make sure that i do what i say i will do and more often than not i get this feedback back from my students.

Nicole Logis
7 months ago

I have been teaching for many years and have learnt that if I am at the same level of the students and not be so authoritative they seem to respect and feel comfortable in the classroom environment and myself. My first session in the class is an ice breaker with introducing myself first and joke around to make them feel comfortable first then I get to know them and they get to know each other.

I am quite flexible in my delivery as there will be days where I know exactly what I will be delivering with them, then I walk into class and there energy is not going to suit what I had in mind so I change it.

Lollies help too 🙂

Jo Hartley
7 months ago
Reply to  Nicole Logis

I often use a joke about myself as an icebreaker as well! In face to face classes i use RR& F (Review, Revision & Food) at the beginning of each lesson where 1-2 students bring some food to share and go through a review and the revision of the previous class (normally a quiz or a game – they get very competitive!) Then Covid came and this had to be adapted for connected delivery I much prefer face to face!

Irina Castellano
7 months ago

Before each class session, I try to do a little exercise to break the ice and to get to know each other better. They either have to share a weird hobby or interview and introduce each other or write 3 things they are grateful for (not to be shared). By showing an interest in each other, we connect, we get to know each other. We discuss the different languages spoken in one group or other cultural aspects, so we can learn from one another. The more we speak to and about one another, the quicker we learn each others names and find common ground.
The more time I invest in the students, the more I get back by them responding in a warmer, kinder way. They often rush to be there on time as they know I will do a little exercise which helps them reflect on things of interest.

David Affleck
7 months ago

I have been teaching long enough to experience the shift in how respect is gained and retained from students.

For some time I struggled understanding why I wasn’t connecting as well.

Like many others I have found that being warm, friendly and interested in the students ,involving them in discussions and being flexible in how the class runs matters .

The days of talking at them passed a while back

Kylie Farlanga
8 months ago

I encourage open discussion in my classroom, both face to face and online. I try to use the discussion points later to make the class feel part of the learning. I feel that by adjusting my lesson program to include individual input has provided students with the opportunity to feel part of our team. They feel valued and other recognise the value of participation.

Fiona MacGregor
8 months ago

I work in TAFE and know that to be able to fully engage the students – you need to build trust and shared respect. It is important to connect with the students so that they feel they are valued and their contributions matter.

Kylie Farlanga
8 months ago

I completely agree with you on this point Fiona. Student contribution seems to form a connection not only with you as the teacher but with to other students (especially when we have been teaching in an on-line environment.

Lynette
9 months ago

As I teach adults often online, I feel respected by students when they treat everyone else in the class with respect. They try to turn up on time,are friendly, take turns in conversation, listen as needed, let me know their learning styles so I can plan accordingly to ensure everyone’s learning needs are being met as much as possible , participate in a mixed variety of activities, support each other in group work , feel comfortable to share appropriate experiences, give feedback, have a laugh together, feel a sense of belonging and feel comfortable which in turn makes me feel comfortable and respected. They value my quals and experience both current and previous.

Rachael Reid
10 months ago

I have found myself distracted and focused on my teachings I have definitely missed a few key points from the languages of respect. Some of them are so simple, yet so important i need to make sure I prioritise them more within my classroom. The times i have demonstrated languages of respect for students i have absolutely witnessed a positive response.

Jo Hartley
7 months ago
Reply to  Rachael Reid

I agree – Its so nice when you find that common balance! Change is hard but so worth it when you see that it can make a difference.

Helen Borgstrom
11 months ago

I also work in the TAFE sector and have found that the respect I receive from students is i feel a result of my personality of being friendly, being positive and interested in them. I like to engage in their interests as much as i can and try to get to know them.

Fiona MacGregor
8 months ago

Helen, I agree that showing interest in the students is highly important as it is through relationships that connections are made and trust develops.

Kylie Farlanga
8 months ago

I also agree with showing interest in students contributions. They seem to be in a happier mood if you recall a previous conversation or ask them further questions about a topic that was discussed from previous lessons.

David Affleck
7 months ago

This is so true . I also work for TAFE . The warmth and interest we show in out students opens them up to their lives and helps us to deliver knowledge relative to their life experiences .

Renee Oostendorp
1 year ago

I had never considered that respect could be shown in different ways, as an adult educator, I just expected respect to be shown towards me and other students in the class. This has opened my eyes to recognise different forms of respect as well as giving me some pointers to start the year off on the right foot.

Fiona MacGregor
8 months ago

Hi Renee,

I agree respect that is reciprocal and rights-based in education is very important to overcome the hurdles associated with generational differences.

David Affleck
7 months ago

I leaned this the hard way. Understanding more about how respect is seen differently has shaped the way I teach and behave with my students

Lene
3 months ago

Interesting what you mentioned about your expectations as an adult educator. It’s easy to think that as adults they will ‘automatically’ respect each other – but as you say; respect are shown and earned in various ways, and could maybe be used successfully as a discussion topic in class to create more awareness?

Rozanne Ping
1 year ago

I had knowledge of the 5 love languages by Gary Chapman, and as a family have been applying this for years, however, I didn’t connect this to my teaching. This has been a real “aha” moment and gives me hope for my future connections with students.

Renee Oostendorp
1 year ago
Reply to  Rozanne Ping

This is so true! I have tried to incorporate the 5 love languages into the classroom but it is difficult to reach each student. Knowing that I can show respect to them in these ways will help me to develop new techniques to keep them engaged and feeling positive about their course.

Tina Klincke
1 year ago

I work in the TAFE Sector and recognise myself doing the ‘wrong thing’ when looking at the Seven Languages of Respect. With hindsight, I can see that the groups I have enjoyed teaching have been the groups that I have unwittingly used some of these techniques with and I can see know that enjoyment may well have been from the mutual respect that has been formed in the classroom. Very interesting, am I’m sure to try and make this a more conscious effort in future.

Rozanne Ping
1 year ago
Reply to  Tina Klincke

Yes, I concur Tina. The groups I have connected with have been the more practical classes where we all get in and get messy or make mistakes. This then brings in the 5th language of respect- authenticity and vulnerability. The students respond very positively to my mistakes 🙂

Renee Oostendorp
1 year ago
Reply to  Tina Klincke

Hi Tina! I totally agree! I am naturally more authoritarian and expect rules to be followed and traditional signs of respect to be displayed. I have also unwittingly incorporated some of these techniques into the classroom and had great success with building a good relationship with the students. I have found greeting them warmly and spending a few minutes at the beginning of the class to debrief about their down time/ family situations/ personal lives is very helpful. We often separate this time with learning by doing a 3 minute meditation to let go of the outside influences and feelings so we can focus on the work we need to do and this has been met with great feedback.

Lyn R
29 days ago
Reply to  Tina Klincke

Congrats Tina on this recognition! It’s great when a PD experience enables you to see things just a little differently to improve your practce, the experience for learners and ultimately your satisfaction as an educator.

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