Your child comes home from school and relays to you how her teacher always chooses a classmate for just about anything! Sounds like a case of a teacher’s pet, doesn’t it? Whether your child is the chosen or one of the crowd, the seemingly harmless behavior of the teacher is likely to have an impact on the students’ wellbeing.
Though professionally trained, it is possible for teachers to play favorites due to the following reasons:
• The child’s special traits may just give teachers enough reasons to be so fond of them. This can be the kid’s unique talents, their innate charm, or even physical attributes.
• Affiliation like family or personal connections may be a basis for teachers preferring one among the rest, as the teacher is more familiar and comfortable with the child.
• Displacement, likened to a defense mechanism, which means that the teacher is shifting her attention to a “safe” person – the favored student, who possesses qualities that the teacher longs to have for herself or for her own child.
Children could readily sense it if there was inequality in the way they are being treated. I often observe among students that when they know a teacher favoring a classmate, they are either displeased with the teacher or resentful towards the favored student. This becomes the focus of their conversation and creates unhealthy relations. Favoring a particular student may bring good to one child, but harm to the others.