The importance of a positive teacher-student relationship: it can boost good behavior in teens for up to 4 years

From experience to meaning...

We’ve known for a long time that a positive relationship between teachers and students is important for learning. In the work of John Hattie the effect size is similar to that of giving optimal feedback. This new study looks at another but related effect: what does a good relationship mean for the behavior of teenagers?

From the press release with a plea for teacher training programs:

A new study has found that having a positive relationship with a teacher around the age of 10-11 years old can markedly influence the development of ‘prosocial’ behaviours such as cooperation and altruism, as well as significantly reduce problem classroom behaviours such as aggression and oppositional behaviour.

The research also found that beneficial behaviours resulting from a positive teacher-student relationship when a child is on the cusp of adolescence lingered for up to four years – well into the difficult teenage years.

Researchers found…

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