Valuing Children

Remember to ‘care for’ instead of ‘care about

Challenging and disrupted behaviour is a significant issue for teachers inside Australian schools. It is important that teachers are given appropriate training and that structures are put in place to support them and all students in the education system.

Teachers need to develop skills in addressing how their approach can be adapted and be shown how to successfully build positive relationships with their students. Not only should their focus be more on caring for students rather than caring about but they also need to actively show students that they are fair, supportive and attentive.

Being able to read and record student’s behaviour is also critical because if you identify what is driving the issue, you have a better chance of correcting it by eliminating the triggers and providing them with skills to address and overcome their own learning and behavioural needs.

Also important is the classroom environment which needs to be high quality and provide lots of different learning opportunities in a meaningful and dynamic way. Students need to feel their teachers are positive, enthusiastic and innovative. While having an inquiry based and hands on approach will allow students to connect to learning in new and interesting ways.

All students want to belong and research has shown that being attached to school has strong protective effects for all children, including those who have a disability and are disengaged. If teachers want to make schooling successful for all their students, they need to create the right relationship and environment for this to be possible. Schools also have the responsibility to ensure teachers are supported in this endeavour and provide teachers and students with structures and systems like PBIS which are designed to make school a safe and successful place for everyone.