Ask Sam letter


To Sam

problems with my teacher

my GCSE science teacher makes me feel really uncomfortable and upset. I don't know what to do, because I'm quiet, I try hard in lessons, i revise and take science very seriously etc but then if I get a low grade she says that it's due to lack of effort and i don't take my work seriously at all. She always trys to find something to point out that I'm doing wrong. If I try and explain to her that I have tried hard or what it is I'm struggling with , she always contradicts me and leaves me feeling like I'm stupid and my points were completley invalad. and I need to do something about it because she is  going to be teaching me next year for my gcses .she completley puts me down and knocks my condfidence
Ask Sam


Hi there,

It can be hard if someone is too critical of us or we don’t get along with them. It is your teacher’s job to grow your confidence, and it can be especially difficult if we need them to help us from time to time.

Some teachers are amazing and can make you feel like they really care. Others can make you feel like they are just out to make your life miserable – but they probably aren’t doing that on purpose. A teacher may have a different style of teaching that doesn’t work for you and so while they think they are doing the best thing for you, they may not realise that it’s making you so unhappy. It’s best to have an open and honest conversation about it.

It can be scary to have that kind of conversation – especially as she is someone you’re feeling uncomfortable with already. Getting the confidence to speak up about how you feel can be really hard when your confidence is knocked. Sometimes you have to take that big step and see what happens. It could be a good idea to ask to speak to her in private, outside of lessons so that she knows it’s something important to you.

When you talk to her it’s important to make sure what you are saying comes across in the right way. If you were to focus on what you think she is doing to make you unhappy then it might become confrontational, which probably wouldn’t be helpful. Instead it’s better to focus on how you’re feeling – telling her that you really enjoy science but at the moment you feel no confidence in yourself. It’s okay to talk about what’s made you feel this way, but try focussing on your own feelings first.

If you really don’t feel able to talk to her yourself then you can always talk to a teacher you do feel comfortable with and see if they can help you sort things out. It might get better on its own, but it also might not – and if it doesn’t get better on its own then you’ll need to do something eventually.

I hope that helps. If you’re still feeling stuck about what to say then you can always talk to a ChildLine counsellor as they are here to help you.

Take care,

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