11 Tips for Building Rapport Between Teacher and Students (2023)

Cite This

Chris Richardson, (2017, October 12). 11 Tips for Building Rapport Between Teacher and Students. Psychreg on General. https://www.psychreg.org/tips-building-rapport-students/

Reading Time: 6 minutes

(Video) A Question to the Teacher: What is the best way to build rapport with students?

Teaching is the art of imparting knowledge and making students learn by experience. There are so many teachers who understand this, and yet, so many who do not. For example, there are teachers whose speeches in class are constantly revolving around themselves; there are also those who do not ask their students questions – they just go on and on, talking and boring the class. Of course your students will lose interest and attention if you are one of them! It is important to implement techniques on how to build a good teacher-student rapport.

Building this special rapport gives your students confidence to ask questions, adds value to your class, and determines everybody to stay persuasive in their work. Most importantly, it gives your students the courage to ‘confront’ you, and expose their opinions. And isn’t this exactly what we are preparing them for? They have to go out in the world and reveal their true beliefs with boldness. That is what proves that you are a good teacher.

Tip #1: The sandwich method

I call this technique ‘sandwich method’ because there are three steps to it. When giving students feedback, we have to be gentle, but also harsh, if we want them to stop making the same mistakes again. So what is the best way to put it? The sandwich method of constructive criticism. You start with a very positive remark, go on to the harsh comment, and end with a positive remark as well. The pieces of bread represent the good remarks, while the ham or cheese (if vegetarian) represents the critique.

For instance, let’s imagine one of my students makes the same writing mistake over and over again. He writes ‘their’ instead of ‘there’. When I give him feedback, I will start with something like this: ‘You did great writing this whole interesting paper by yourself, but you should never write “their” instead of “there” again, OK? I am so proud to have such a smart student in my class!’

Tip #2: Be yourself

Not all of us are made for teaching. There are some people who like dancing, others who enjoy maths, and some who are inspired by philosophy. If you think teaching is not fit for you, you can always switch careers. There is no point in sticking to what you don’t like. And while in other job fields your frustration would probably be unnoticeable for the people around you, teaching is not part of that field. Students can see if you don’t like teaching. You know why? Because you are constantly trying to be somebody else.

The key to success teaching is staying true to who you are and living by your values. The best teacher does not fake smiles, or gets tired of teaching. The best teacher enjoys interacting with her students, and loves strong connections, which she develops constantly. The best teacher is a person who is not afraid of putting herself in an uncomfortable situation. She is so shameless and so proud of her willingness to share everything with her students that she won’t stop being herself.

(Video) 11 Middle School Teachers' Best Tips for Building Relationships with Students

Tip #3: Find their interests

If you are interested in connecting with students, you should probably get to know them better. Create activities that help you understand their hobbies and passions, and use them to bring pupils closer to you. For instance, take them out for a film, and talk about it after. Analyse what they liked and what they didn’t, and listen to their opinions on the action. What did they think about the characters? To whom do they resemble the most and why? Henry Evanoff, freelance writer at EssayGeeks, and part-time teacher, shares his experience with us: ‘After my students shared their negative thoughts on WWII with me, I took them to a great war-related film. I used our next meeting to talk about their views, and to see if they changed. They were so many things I didn’t expect them to see, and yet, they did. They changed their perspectives on the war, and they understood so much more after leaving the cinema. Finding out their interests was definitely worthy.’

Tip #4: Talk about books

Film debating is not always possible. Therefore, talking about books and plots and characters is still interesting. This way, you not only get them to read, but also develop their imagination. Assign a certain books for a certain class (make sure you give them a reasonable, ahead of time notice). The day the assignment is due, arrange the classroom in such way that they all sit in a circle and see each other’s faces. This creates openness and strengthens confidence.

Start talking about the book, and make them debate on the subject. Importantly, don’t forget that they have to stay respectful to one another. Never let them interrupt their classmates. Set certain rules, and write them down if you have to.

Tip #5: Attend extracurricular events

Sometimes, our students get so attached that they invite us to different activities outside of class. This is a big step towards a great student-teacher rapport. If you have the necessary time, don’t hesitate to go. It’s not ‘weird’, ‘odd’, or ‘unusual’. These things happen all the time.

One time, one of my dearest students invited me to their birthday party. She was turning 14, so I thought: what would I do there? But regardless of that, I went. I had a blast! I had so much fun I cannot even describe it to you. I just went there and felt 14 again. It is a great experience, so be courageous and go.

Tip #6: Design a comfortable classroom

In order to have an open environment, you will need bright, warm colours on your walls, and possibly some nice drawings. Ask the school board for permission, and then start working on your classroom. You can add ‘trademarks’ of your students on the wall, or make them draw something every day until there is no more space to write on.

(Video) Teacher Life: 5 Ways of Building Rapport-- Respect with Students

What I like to do is keep litres of paint in the classroom, and whenever somebody answers a question correctly, he or she can stick their hands in the paint and then stick it to the wall. Their red/yellow/blue/green palms on the wall means they have contributed to class. And I am telling you, that proud moment of glory will serve them as an incentive to contribute again. Usually, pupils are much more enthusiastic about this task than they are about writing my PowerPoint presentation.

Tip #7: Respect

An important form of respect in the classroom could be saying ‘hi’ or ‘bye’ every time someone leaves the class. If it’s you who is leaving first, you have to say ‘goodbye’ first. If it’s them, they have to. It makes students feel like their presence is essential in class. This detail, although apparently small, will establish a better connection with your dear students.

Tip #8: Everyday life lessons

Having intelligent discussions and teaching them something new academically is great. But do not forget about life. Teaching your students life lessons through different activities is extremely valuable. It develops their emotional intelligence, which is extremely important to have, especially nowadays. You can set up morning meetings for people to share their feelings on different matters. At the end of each day, you can make them highlight the most important actions they have taken. Stay sincere and make them be honest with their feelings as well.

Tip #9: Be playful

Children are playful, so if we want them to learn something, we have to play their games. I am not saying play hide and seek in the playground – I am talking about asking random facts or telling funny stories to them. Even making up a funny game can be a good idea.

Imagination is essential when we talk with children. Make them tell you the most interesting hero stories they know, and ask them if there is anything they would change about those stories. If the answer is yes, ask them to draw that change for you; or, if older, make them write a composition about it. If they make mistakes when writing, never punish them. Use the sandwich method, and offer them constructive criticism. Be playful like a child in the classroom, while of course, keeping the duties of a teacher.

Tip #10: You can’t read minds

When you don’t understand a certain student’s behaviour, ask – never assume. This is a very common mistake teachers make, and it is wrong. Assuming your students ‘slam their books on their desks because they are angry at you’, or ‘didn’t do their homework because they played video games’ is very harmful for your relationship with them.

(Video) 5 Ways to build Positive Relationships with Students

Always ask them why they react a certain way, and keep an open mind to understand their problems. If they have serious issues (maybe family-related), make sure you take action.

Tip #11: Families

Families play a big role in how students react at school. So include them in your teaching strategy. Throw a barbecue party at your house and invite all of your students. Ask them to bring their families, so you can meet them. This is a great way to bond with the people ‘behind the curtains’ and understand where certain behaviours in your students come from.


Creating a good student-teacher rapport is essential in spreading your knowledge. In order to be a teacher, it is not enough to master your subject. You have to master your emotions, and expose yourself in front of your students. You have to keep an open mind, and never be afraid of losing. Your students’ confidence in themselves and in yourself comes from acceptance, broad-mindedness, and interest. These feelings might be one-sided at first, but as time goes by, I am sure your students will start giving.

Chris Richardson is a journalist, editor, and a blogger. He loves to write, learn new things, and meet new outgoing people.

The articles we publish on Psychreg are here to educate and inform. They’re not meant to take the place of expert advice. So if you’re looking for professional help, don’t delay or ignore it because of what you’ve read here. Check our full disclaimer.

(Video) Build Rapport With Anyone In 1 Minute | Australian Success Academy


How do you build rapport between students and teachers? ›

Tips for Rapport-Building

Learn something about your students' interests, hobbies, and aspirations. Create and use personally relevant class examples. Arrive to class early and stay late -- and chat with your students. Explain your course policies -- and why they are what they are.

What are 3 things teachers need to know to help you build rapport with students? ›

The Importance of Developing Rapport with Students
  • Learn to call your students by their names.
  • Ask students about their interests, hobbies, and aspirations.
  • Create and use personally relevant examples during class lectures and discussions.
Feb 9, 2022

Which one is the best way for a teacher to establish rapport with students? ›

One of the best ways to build rapport with your students is to talk with them. Spending one-on-one time with each student makes them feel valued and lets them know you care about them beyond the art room. Ask them about their weekends, extracurricular activities, the music they like, or what they had for school lunch.

What is the rapport between teacher and student? ›

Rapport refers to the relationship that students and teachers build with each other during the learning process. A positive and friendly relationship between an instructor and a learner is needed to personalize learning and make the process simply fascinating.

What is good rapport in teaching? ›

Rapport is 'the relationship that the learners have with the teachers and vice versa…a class where there is a positive, enjoyable and respectful relationship between teacher and learners and between learners themselves', according to Jeremy Harmer in The Practice of English Language Teaching (2007) Pearson Longman.

What are the three key elements of rapport? ›

Attention, empathy and shared expectations constitute the three dimensions of rapport.

What is rapport building techniques? ›

Nonverbal communication is central to building rapport. Pay attention to your nonverbal cues and mannerisms—body posture, eye contact, facial expressions. When someone is speaking to you, face them, make comfortable eye contact, and mirror their expressions as they speak.

What is an example of building rapport with students? ›

Building Rapport With Your Students
  • Smile. Don't be afraid to show some warmth towards your students. ...
  • Say my name. Students will respond when you call them by name. ...
  • What's Your Story? ...
  • Use the first day. ...
  • Office hours. ...
  • Students Have Lives. ...
  • Encourage students to get to know each other. ...
  • Check in.

How do you create respect and rapport in the classroom? ›

Download the PDF resource here.
  1. Let all your students know that you respect and care about them. ...
  2. Set up a classroom culture of inclusion and respect. ...
  3. Acknowledge students who demonstrate kindness, respect and thoughtfulness. ...
  4. Use positive approaches when educating students about acceptable and unacceptable behaviours.

What is the best way for teachers to communicate with students? ›

5 Ways to Establish Effective Communication in the Classroom
  1. Create a safe environment.
  2. Encourage teamwork.
  3. Don't stand at the front of the classroom.
  4. Use some active listening exercises.
  5. Be sure to give positive feedback.
Jan 10, 2022

How do you maintain rapport with students? ›

Strategies for Getting to Know Your Students Better
  1. Stand in the hall between classes. ...
  2. Advise a club or open your room for study sessions. ...
  3. Go to school events if possible, but try to see students outside of class. ...
  4. Pay attention to and respect their nonverbal behavior. ...
  5. Always, always look for the good in them.
Aug 24, 2018

What is engagement between student and teacher? ›

According to The Glossary of Education Reform, student engagement “refers to the degree of attention, curiosity, interest, optimism, and passion that students show when they are learning or being taught, which extends to the level of motivation they have to learn and progress in their education.”

What are the 4 elements of rapport? ›

If you want to build rapport with customers, you need to succeed with the 4 Principles of Rapport: empathy, authenticity, similarity, and shared experience.

What are examples of good rapport? ›

Rapport can be built by showing a personal interest in the customer. For example, if a customer says they have been in hospital, ask them how the recovery is going. If you were speaking to somebody face-to-face and they said that they had just come out of hospital, it would be courteous to check how they are.

Why should teachers build rapport with students? ›

It can minimize anxiety, increase student participation, structure and encourage social interaction, foster a positive learning environment, and increase learning.

What should you avoid when building rapport? ›

Five Mistakes When Trying To Build Rapport
  • Showing interest in a part of their life that doesn't really interest you. ...
  • Going over the top. ...
  • Trying to find too many points in common. ...
  • Talking too much about yourself. ...
  • Making things up.
Feb 16, 2023

What is the rapport triangle? ›

Just take a look at this client's story, which illustrates the way the rapport triangle works (the rapport triangle is an inverted triangular method of moving from small talk rituals to learning the facts surrounding a person, such as job or geography, to uncovering views and opinions, to tapping into emotions and ...

What is the single most important factor in gaining rapport? ›

Honesty is always the best policy when establishing a rapport with someone, so resist the urge to embellish your personality or achievements, or to create a facade behind which to conceal the 'real' you.

What do students need most from teachers? ›

They want teachers who can admit their mistakes

Students are very watchful and most times they are attentive to your actions as a teacher. They want to know you are the right person to offer direction in their class. By admitting your mistakes, you prove to them that you are human and honest about who you are.

What are 3 things a teacher must do? ›

Teachers create engaging lesson plans that will educate students and nurture an interest in education. They can instruct in various subjects and across different learning levels. Responsibilities of teachers include assigning and grading homework, documenting progress and planning instructional activities.

What are 2 core teaching strategies? ›

Top 5 Teaching Strategies
  • Differentiated Instruction: Learning Stations. Differentiated instruction strategies allow teachers to engage each student by accommodating to their specific learning style. ...
  • Cooperative Learning: The Jigsaw Method. ...
  • Utilizing Technology in the Classroom. ...
  • Inquiry-Based Instruction. ...
  • Graphic Organizers.
Oct 3, 2019

How do you build rapport easily? ›

6 ways to build rapport and break the ice
  1. First, understand yourself. The first thing to do, before you even begin a conversation, is to focus on yourself. ...
  2. Practice active listening. Listening plays a key role in building rapport. ...
  3. Use positive body language. ...
  4. Look for commonalities. ...
  5. Grow your empathy. ...
  6. Ask open-ended questions.
Jan 9, 2023

How do you build rapport examples? ›

How to build rapport
  • Find times to connect.
  • Be friendly, yet genuine.
  • Ask questions about the person's work, life or interests.
  • Remember details from your conversation—especially their name.
  • Build on a previous conversation with follow-up questions.
  • Answer their questions about yourself.
Feb 3, 2023

What is the best way to build rapport with children? ›

There are many ways to build rapport with your child such as playing or spending quality time together, giving praise, letting them have choices instead of telling them what to do, listening to them, and many more.

What are the three types of rapport? ›

There are three types of building rapport and I will list them in order of difficulty:
  • Normal Rapport. Rapport is easy when you and the person have a lot in common, which we call normal rapport. ...
  • Impromptu Rapport. ...
  • Custom rapport.
Jun 27, 2015

What are the five techniques used to mimic & build rapport? ›

Let's walk through some of the techniques CIA agents use to genuinely connect and build trust with their colleagues.
  • Find ways to make yourself well rounded. ...
  • Don't pretend to be someone you're not. ...
  • Listen. ...
  • Give to get. ...
  • Take notes.
Sep 30, 2021

What are the 3 things you need to build a rapport with a prospect? ›

3 steps to build rapport in sales with any prospect
  • Use body language cues and mirroring to build trust.
  • Optimize your contact strategy.
  • Adopt the character traits of a closer.
Dec 6, 2018

How do you show responsiveness to students? ›

What is responsive teaching?
  1. helping the learner focus his or her attention.
  2. providing reassurance that the task is manageable.
  3. structuring the task to help students decide what steps should be taken and in what order.
  4. modelling how an expert does it.
  5. “thinking aloud” to let the learner observe expert thinking.

How do teachers show respect to students? ›

Listen to students—and hear them. Use positive humor, not sarcasm. Provide corrective feedback in ways that foster student effort. Acknowledge student growth.

What are 10 ways to show respect? ›

Main body
  • Be kind and courteous.
  • Be polite, avoid interrupting or causing disturbances.
  • Listen to others and respect differences in beliefs and opinions.
  • Think before you speak, your language and tone.
  • Lend a helping hand or ear and practice compassion.

How do you build rapport with Tutees? ›

To establish rapport with your tutees it's important that you are willing to have an open dialogue with the student by listening attentively and responding thoughtfully. Two of the biggest factors in establishing rapport with a student are respect and trust.

What are three ways in which you could establish good communication with teachers? ›

The best way to communicate with teachers is to show them that you value their time. Meet them in their classroom rather than your office, turn off notifications on your phone and computer, and open the conversation by asking questions. Show teachers that you know their time is valuable and that their voices matter.

How can teachers improve student interactions? ›

6 Strategies to Build Positive Student-Teacher Relationships
  • Believe that all students can succeed. ...
  • Get to know your students. ...
  • Say hello and goodbye to every student, every day. ...
  • Laugh with your students. ...
  • Provide students with choice. ...
  • Accept students–and their mistakes in the classroom.
Dec 14, 2022

How do you build respect and rapport in the classroom? ›

Download the PDF resource here.
  1. Let all your students know that you respect and care about them. ...
  2. Set up a classroom culture of inclusion and respect. ...
  3. Acknowledge students who demonstrate kindness, respect and thoughtfulness. ...
  4. Use positive approaches when educating students about acceptable and unacceptable behaviours.

How do you maintain good rapport with students? ›

Building Rapport With Your Students
  1. Smile. Don't be afraid to show some warmth towards your students. ...
  2. Say my name. Students will respond when you call them by name. ...
  3. What's Your Story? ...
  4. Use the first day. ...
  5. Office hours. ...
  6. Students Have Lives. ...
  7. Encourage students to get to know each other. ...
  8. Check in.

What is an example of a rapport? ›

Rapport can be built by showing a personal interest in the customer. For example, if a customer says they have been in hospital, ask them how the recovery is going. If you were speaking to somebody face-to-face and they said that they had just come out of hospital, it would be courteous to check how they are.

How do you handle unruly students? ›

What to do
  1. Be steady, consistent and firm.
  2. Acknowledge the feelings of the individual.
  3. Remember that disruptive behavior is often caused by stress or frustration.
  4. Address the disruption individually, directly and immediately.
  5. Be specific about the behavior that is disruptive and set limits.

What is good rapport building examples? ›

How to build rapport
  • Find times to connect.
  • Be friendly, yet genuine.
  • Ask questions about the person's work, life or interests.
  • Remember details from your conversation—especially their name.
  • Build on a previous conversation with follow-up questions.
  • Answer their questions about yourself.
Feb 3, 2023

How do you establish respect with students? ›

Earning your students' respect requires you to be consistent, keep your word, control your frustration, learn who your students are, be patient, speak in a normal tone of voice, and be kind. This might sound like a lot, but honestly, it's not as hard as it sounds.

How do you build a strong relationship with students? ›

6 Easy Ways to Build Relationships with Your Students
  1. Spend 1-On-1 Time with a Student. ...
  2. Look for Something to Comment On. ...
  3. Develop an Interest in Their Interests. ...
  4. Share Your Stories. ...
  5. Have a Sense of Humor. ...
  6. Attend Student Events.

How do you connect with students in the classroom? ›

Arrive early for class and stay a bit later to chat with students and address any questions they may have. Learn students' names. Ask students questions about their experiences related to course content. Be available and encourage students to meet with you, either during office hours or after class.


1. Ideas for Building Relationships with Students in your Classroom! | Student Relationship Building
2. Building Rapport with Students| Top 10 Tips by Experts
(literature notes)
3. Teacher tips- Building relationships with your students
(The Rogers In Motion)
4. Build Rapport at the Door: Launch Your Classroom! Live Episode 11
(Educational Partners International)
5. Celeste Headlee: 10 ways to have a better conversation | TED
6. Tips for building rapport | VIPKID student won't speak
(Happy Farms)


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