St. John Bosco counsels his educators, "Love what the youth loves and they will love what you love." No one cares about what you know until they know that you care.
The picture shows a few of my students from a school where I had a tough class. I had time to "waste" of them e.g. during the candy drive, I took groups to the metro station where we sold so much that we won 2nd place. I told them that I don't believe any kid is bad & I meant it. They responded with trust & openness.
These days, I have my own kids. Lately, I got a couple of weekends when I did not have to work so I reconnected with my 9 year old by spending an afternoon in Dave & Busters. We were like comrade in arms as we shot aliens & dinosaurs. I relaxed his diet by treating him to a malt. Sure enough, his one word answers became more ellaborate. He opened up like he was talking to his friend. When we returned home, he told his siblings to look forward for a one-on-one time with me. Today, I played Old Maid, Dora Bingo & Trip to Candy land with my 5 year old daughter. She relished every minute of it.
There is a cost to all this. If I spent all the time at work, I'd make more & be somebody. But if that will send my daughters to the dancing pole of a go-go bar & my sons to juvi to get my attentiion, then I rather spend my time with them. They're the reason I work.