Teachers, Knowledge, Building Relationships: Invitation and Hospitality

Throughout elementary school, all the teachers taught in a colonial-style way. The teachers always stood at the front doing lessons, never opening up discussions or allowing their students to share their knowledge. These things displayed that the teacher held all the power and knowledge. The teachers followed the curriculum closely and did not incorporate different learning styles. Students strictly listened to the teacher’s instructions, wrote notes and did the assignments. 

In high school, the teachers taught slightly less colonial. My science teacher taught us through lectures and incorporated hands-on learning with experiments. Although my history/math teacher taught through lectures, she gave us the opportunity to add information and discuss the topic we were learning. By doing this, she shifted the power dynamic a little bit. My English teacher taught differently., He put all the information we needed online and gave us limited direction. 

Attempts to build a community within the classroom were limited in elementary school. Teachers tended to strictly work inside the classroom and left times for interaction outside the classroom. Relationships between students and teachers were limited in elementary school. In high school, the teachers began to build relationships and created a community within the classroom. This happened by teachers having conversations with all of their students and participating in activities as well. By the teacher creating relationships with us, the classroom was more inviting. They also opened up opportunities for students to interact through group projects and discussions.  

There are many ways for teachers to build hospitality and create an inviting environment. One big way is by creating relationships with students. If a student has a positive relationship with their teacher, they tend to be more attentive, which leads to a better academic outcome. Teachers could pay attention to students and discover what they can bring to the learning space. By listening to a student and paying attention to their knowledge, teachers will be able to encourage and help each individual properly. Lastly, teachers could collaborate with their students. When a teacher works with a student instead of letting them figure it out on their own, students will feel more comfortable asking for help when needed.