What was the significance behind what the teacher in To Sir, With Love to connect with his students?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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I think that one of the most significant elements behind what Braithwaite does to connect with his students is his elemental care.  Braithwaite is shown as someone who addresses his students with respect, is willing to validate their voices, and creates an atmosphere where respect and understanding is reciprocal.  This is not his initial stance towards them.  Rather, it is something that arises out of the very idea that the traditional way of working with the students, the way that so many others at Greenslade have worked with students, simply does not work for him.  Braithwaite evolves in his teaching and in establishing a classroom climate of understanding and validation with a reciprocal standard of respect being given to everyone who interacts with it.  Through this, the significance of his connection is highly significant because it represents a way in which the students are actually able to learn from Braithwaite and a way in which he is able to teach. This becomes significant because it forms the crux of the narrative and represents the essence of both the students' transformation and Braithwaite's own.


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