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Managing Teacher's expectations

Being in school can be a real pain sometimes (actually, most of the time). There is one thing that gets to all of us: teachers’ expectations. I mean, they just want so much when we have so little time. If we are not careful the expectation gets a bit much and starts to become overwhelming.

Now when things get like this, we only have a few options: run away and start a new life in Fiji; figure out why we might be feeling so stressed; or talk to our teachers about it.

If you haven’t chosen to escape to Fiji, then start by asking yourself: why am I feeling so stressed about my teachers’ expectations? Often the way we react to expectations is shaped by what happened to us a child. Do your parents have high expectations of you? Do they get really disappointed if you don’t meet their expectations? If the answer is yes and hell yes, then you might have unsolved issues from your past that are affecting your present. (Welcome to the club). Talking to loved ones, or even therapy, can help with this.

If you feel like it’s not you, and your teacher is just a monster, then that’s another story. The two things you need in this situation are clearness and understanding (oh and also, communication). In other words, you need to speak to your teacher to find out exactly what they expect from you; if you feel like you can’t meet their expectations you need to make that clear to them, so they can help you. Remember lecturers, teachers and instructors are paid to help you. If you make it clear that you need help, they are likely to give it to you. It might be awkward at first but take the leap – it is better than pulling your hair out with stress, trust me. .

Change your perspective and uncover a way forward for you!

Here are some things that can help you with that.

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The Things We Cannot Say by Kelly Rimmer
This story is one of bravery, resilience, and the lengths we will go to for the ones we love. It slips between the narrative of a Nazi-occupied Poland and the frenetic pace of modern life.

Good Enough by Jen Petro-Roy
This story is about a girl dealing with the expectations from her family, school and friends. It is an inspiring story about finding your own strength and listening to yourself.

Boys Who Made A Difference by Michelle Roehm McCann
This book is about young men who followed their dreams and changed the world for the better, often by taking the path less travelled and staying true to themselves.


Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
A young boy named Harry Potter has to work with his friends to help solve a mystery at his school. He also has to deal with the expectation of being the 'chosen one'.

Matilda shares a home with her parents and brother, who do not appreciate her. When her principal tortures her and a kind-hearted teacher, she uses her telekinetic powers to settle scores.

School of Rock
Dewey Finn becomes a substitute teacher of an uptight elementary private school, only to try and turn his class into a rock band.


To be honest, there are not many playlists about ‘managing expectations’, so instead, here is a playlist that will help make you feel better.


Teenager Therapy
Five students talk about their experiences in school and the struggles of being a teenager.

The Grow Your Mind Podcast
This podcast uses storytelling, interviews and humour to increase children's understanding of their mental health and ways to be resilient.

The Big Life Kids Podcast
This podcast teaches children to stay resilient, believe in themselves, and face life's challenges with confidence!

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