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I'm currently taking a class at the local seminary about how to teach.  Our teacher made the following comment.

The more a child feels comfortable with the teacher, the more they are going to act out.

I guess that's why the older Rachel gets the more she talks back to me.

Seriously though, while I'd never heard this before it makes a ton of sense.

As I got closer to the teens in youth group, they really began to feel comfortable with me and each-other.  As the new teens come in they are incredibly attentive.  Over time they too sometimes stray off into their own conversations.

A lot of this comes from individual maturity.  The older these guys get the more willing they are to sit still and let each-other talk.

In any case it has some real repercussions, since I tend to try to connect at a personal level with people.  How do you keep that connection while also commanding respect?

I guess that's a question for next class.



Jess said…
When I was teaching, I noticed that after the kids got used to me, they would test their boundries... if I caved a little in one area, they would push it further and further each week. But if I stood my ground, they would back off immediately, and they never took it personally. I think kids just always want to know exactly where their limits are, and once they find them, they are happy staying within them (for the most part at least). I'm not sure if that's exactly what your post is about, but it's one of my teaching observations that's along similar lines.

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