Resolving Conflict with a Teacher

Having a conflict with one of your teachers can make the school day seem to last forever. It can also have a negative impact on your academic work–making it difficult to focus and do well in class. A conflict with a teacher can also be stressful and take a toll on your general well being. It’s important to take steps to resolve a conflict so that you can do your best work and the conflict does not interfere with your performance at school.

Talk it Out
In most cases, you will want to set up a time to speak with your teacher one-on-one. Explain how you feel and how you want to make things better. Be honest, but avoid assigning blame or getting upset. It is important to show that you want to smooth out the conflict and are willing to make the time to work through the problem. If you need to apologize, be clear and let your teacher know you are sorry and want to move forward. If you feel that the teacher is the one at fault, try to explain your feelings.

Write it Down
If you are nervous about speaking to the teacher, you may want to write out how you are feeling in a letter. Take your time and be careful with your words so that you spell out exactly what you want to say and avoid further misunderstandings. In your letter, explain how you are feeling and what you want to happen next. A letter can be a good way to open the door to a conversation or smooth things out when you need time to get your words right.

Ask for Help
Going to a guidance counselor can be another way to resolve a conflict with a teacher. Your guidance counselor can help you to talk through the situation and plan how you will work with the teacher. A counselor may also be able to mediate a conversation with the teacher if it’s a trickier situation or you would be more comfortable with another person in the room. Guidance counselors are trained to help facilitate positive conflict resolution and can help you and your teacher reach an understanding.

If you’ve had a conflict with a teacher, the best thing to do is handle it right away. Letting things drag out will only lead to unnecessary stress and risk hurting your academic record and peace of mind at school.

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