[MUSIC] Hello. Welcome back. This is course eight, Developing Relationships. And it's week one where we're looking at the importance of relationships. And today we're going to be looking at some of the elements that are associated with human relationships. What I'd like to do first of all is to talk for a little while about what relationships are. What's involved in them and what dimensions there are in terms of thinking about relationships. And what we know is that with any human relationship, there are really three different ways in which we can look at things. We can look at the way in which we interact with each other. We can look at the content of what we're talking about or thinking about at the time. And we can look at the circumstances in which that interaction occurs. I want to spend a few minutes looking at each of these things. If we're going to interact in the classroom with our students, with other teachers, with our parents and so on, then we can suggest that the first area is how we interact, the way we go about things. And we would suggest that this is perhaps the power relationship that occurs in a classroom. And the power relationship can be looked at as being a dichotomy between two different ways of interacting with people. At one end there's telling and if you tell people things and you expect them to respond to that then you're in a very powerful position. However, if you ask questions you're inviting people to be involved. You're asking them to be actively involved in the decisions that are being made. So, there's a very large difference between asking and telling. And if teachers spend most of their time at one end or the other of these, then it will end up with different responses from the students. If we look at the second aspect and that is looking at the content of our interactions. We are effectively talking about the curriculum. And the curriculum is in its broadest sense here because it might not just be mathematics or English, it might also be the relationships that we have in terms of understanding how we interact with each other. So, the content of our interaction can be in two different ways as well. And again if we look at one way we can look at a very, very narrow focus. That narrow focus would be on individual tasks, or on individual pieces of knowledge. So, for instance, we could be teaching things at the level of "What is the answer to two plus two?" Now, that might be useful, but it doesn't help us to do anything else because remembering the answer to two plus two doesn't help us do anything else. Now, at the other end of that particular dichotomy, we could argue that we might look about processes or concepts. For instance, if we talked about the concept of addition it would help us to understand the answer to two plus two, but it also helps us to understand the answers to a lot of other questions as well. So, if we're going to focus our attention on the things that we teach, we need to look perhaps towards concepts, developing young people's concepts, developing their understanding of the processes that are needed in order for them to be able to work and to learn. So, then if we look at the third of these things, it's essentially the environment in which we're interacting. And basically the environment can be either very, very positive or quite negative. And in some places, at the moment, with all of the accountability, with all of the issues associated with standardised testing and the way in which standardised testing is used, there are some very negative environments in classrooms. Because in some parts of the world, if your school does not do well, you get punished. Teachers might be moved. Principals might be fired. You might get less money and so on. And that's a very negative environment. And that will change the way in which we look at things. At the other end, we might have a very supportive environment. And supporting here is how do we go about making sure that people learn what we want them to learn, but in a way that allows them to feel positive about themselves at the same time? So, we have these three different ways of looking at things. We have the way we interact, which is the power relationships. We have the content of our interaction, which is what we're looking at and we have the environment in which we work, which is either positive or negative. If we put these three things together we can end up with eight different sectors, if you like, eight different ways of behaving. And each of these eight different ways lead to different types of responses from students. So, if we behave in a particular way then we need to think about what the response will be. So, for instance, if we spend most of our time telling students what to do and if we spend most of our time focusing on individual facts, or individual pieces of information, and if we spend most of our time in a negative environment, where we punish people for getting things wrong, then we end up in this particular quadrant in the bottom right hand side of your screen. Now, what would be the response from students if we spent most of our time in this? If we're telling people things, we're looking at narrow focuses and we punish people if they get them wrong, then the response to this is that we have to memorise the answer. If we memorise the answer and we get it right, then we feel good about ourselves, but we don't learn much. So, what we could end up with here is that we have, what we might call, defiant compliance. So, people comply with what they have to do. They do the homework, they answer the questions, but at the same time, they're not enjoying what they do in school. Let's look at the other end of the spectrum. So, if we spent most of our time asking questions and if those questions addressed rather large issues such as addition, such as understanding things, and we then spend a positive, supportive environment. We develop this in a way that allows people to feel comfortable about themselves. We could end up in the top left-hand corner. And so what we have here is a different set of responses. And if we go back to the list of responses that we might suggest people will have to these various ways of behaving, what we would suggest here is if a teacher asks lots of questions, if those questions are about really important elements of learning. And if the teacher then supports the students to find the answer, then what we're really doing is trying to promote student understanding. Rather than memorising individual pieces of information we're helping students to understand what that information means. We're helping them to develop their own learning strategies. So, if we spend most of our time in this top left hand corner, asking questions about really consequential things, and in a supportive environment, then what we're leaning towards we could call cooperative learning. Two different ways of looking at what we do as teachers. Now, the real question is, how much time do you spend in either of those corners, and how much time do you spend in the other corners? Because there are times when you must tell students what to do. There are times when you do need to look at individual pieces of information. And there may well be times when you have to punish students if they do things the wrong way. So, it's not the fact that each of these are right or wrong, it's how much time do you spend in each area. And I would argue the more time you spent asking major issues, supporting, the more likely you'll end up with a cooperative environment in your classroom. So, here's an activity that you might think about. You can discuss it with your colleagues in school or you can discuss it on the forum. What are some ways in which we can support each other to ask really positive questions? Instead of telling people what to do, how can we turn that around and turn it into a question? Secondly, how do we make sure that every time we teach an individual fact that we're also focusing on teaching the concept that is associated with it. And finally, what are some of the strategies that you could use to make your classroom really supportive, how can we make sure that every student in the classroom feels supported in their learning? Next week, Dr. Fawaz is going to talk to you a bit more about what are the strategies that we could use for improving our relationships for our students, for our colleagues, for our leaders, and for our parents. He will talk to you again fairly soon. Thank you. [MUSIC]