Why You Should Give Your Phone Number to Students

This is the 3rd in the draft purge series where I’m throwing stuff out. I’m down to 56 drafts – down from 70! (not factorial)

I’ve taught in the classroom for over 17 years. I never hesitated to give my phone number out. In all those years, with all those kiddos, I got one drunk call. And that was an accident – he meant to call Ben and not Bon.

It was a good idea. And I’ve had good results.

So why should you do it?

To show you’re human.

If you teach math, you just might be viewed as supernatural. Or inhuman, depending on the student. Famous, important or supernatural people don’t just give out their phone numbers willy-nilly.

If you give yours, you’re showing your human side. You have to keep the authority, but you can give a little. Let them in.

To offer a ray of hope.

They will probably be nervous about calling, but they’ll text. And they’ll understand if it takes you a while to get back to them. If they have this lifeline, they won’t lose the confidence

they have gained in your presence.

I’ve heard hundreds of students say, “I was doing okay in class, but when I got home, I just couldn’t understand what I’d been doing.”

There’s a magic of the teacher standing there. It’s a safety net. And it gives many students the confidence they need to keep going.

It’s a fake net, but it works.

If they know they can text you, they maintain this safety net at home.

To show trust.

For some reason, classrooms have gotten into the “us vs. them” mentality. Teachers are the bad guys to the students. Teachers may label kids unfairly, too.

Show your students you’re not a label maker. Let them know that you have trust and faith in them. Give them your number!

Will you do it?

How do you show you’re human? How do you give hope and show trust? Will you try the phone number sharing?

Let me know in the comments and don’t forget to share this on twitter!

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2 Responses to Why You Should Give Your Phone Number to Students

  1. Agreed! I gave my number out to students this year — with no hesitation, thanks to Google Voice! It was wonderful — I was able to help students at night — just a few minutes of my time eased their minds and made them more successful!

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