Every trimester I give out a feedback form to my students. I truly want to learn what how they feel about my class. More importantly, I want to find out what their perception of me is. One of the questions I ask them is, “How much do you feel Mr. S. likes you?” I was surprised by one student who marked down that I dislike them. First off this student is a very good student who makes minor behavioral decisions that I disagree with. I honestly like this child. They are not reprimanded very often nor have they ever received a poor mark in my class.
If all that is true above, why does that child believe I dislike them? I honestly don’t know but I will be finding out soon. What is interesting here is the idea that my actions toward him may not be showing him how I truly feel about him. How often does this happen with my other students? What about other adults? This conversation was brought up in the restorative justice group on Voxer. How often are our words and actions being interpreted in a different manner than what we were intending?
I look forward to finding out the feedback the rest of my students give me. The important part of this whole process is that I have to use this information to change my teaching. If you hold power over a person or group of people it is your duty to find out what they think of you and your job. How many administrators poll their teachers? How many teachers poll their students? If we care about our students shouldn’t we find out how they truly feel about us and our class? How else will we get better?