Building relationships key to teaching
By ALLAN TINKER
Dr. Cheri Poitra’s philosophy for reading students is building relationships with families outside to the school. "It is hard to understand why a student does things if you have never been in their environment." She notes that one must have the expectation that they will find their way with support.
When a student has his or her head down, one needs to know where they are coming from. Often, someone will be too quick to judge the behavior instead of understanding who and from where the student is coming.
Kids might be tired after taking care of other kids at home; they may have to deal with drinking in the family. "Often school is the only safe place they have," added Poitra. "It is also essential to keep boundaries between personal and professional issues."