Date of Award
Doctor of Education (EdD)
Purpose: The purpose of this qualitative study was to explore and describe the strategies that elementary teachers use to establish, maintain, and restore positive relationships with students in Capturing Kids’ Hearts National Showcase Schools.
Methodology: This study included 12 teachers from 2 elementary schools in California who received the National Showcase Award for their implementation of the Capturing Kids’ Hearts program. The principals of the 2 schools were asked to each recommend 6 teachers from their site, based on criteria provided by the researcher. Data was collected through the use of classroom observations, interviews, and artifact analysis.
Findings: In order to establish, maintain, and restore positive relationships with students, teachers in Capturing Kids’ Hearts National Showcase Schools use a variety of strategies to learn about students and their personal lives, empower them to have a voice in the classroom, and to reinforce positive behavior. When a negative interaction occurs, teachers make time to address the situation privately, and allow students a fresh start to change their behavior.
Conclusions: The findings of this study led to 3 major conclusions. First, the Capturing Kids’ Hearts program is beneficial in helping teachers establish, maintain, and restore positive relationships with students. Next, teachers must be intentional in their practices in order to establish, maintain, and restore positive relationships with students. Finally, establishing, maintaining, and restoring positive relationships require a significant amount of quality time spent between teachers and students.
Recommendations: It is essential that teachers receive professional development on the benefits of positive teacher-student relationships, and the strategies that foster these types of relationships in classrooms. Additionally, programs that focus on the development of positive teacher-student relationships, such as Capturing Kids’ Hearts, should be implemented in all schools. Finally, more classroom-based research should be conducted on the development of positive teacher-student relationships at all school levels.
Cano, Allison, "Strengthening Teacher-Student Relationships: Identifying Strategies From Capturing Kids’ Hearts National Showcase Schools" (2019). Dissertations. 243.