We are living in a world where:
- Parents are getting far lesser time with their children
- Family as an institution is going through a major restructuring
- Society has an alternate form – virtual.
These changes have made the role of teachers even more significant and holistic. They cannot be merely subject experts or inculcators of values. They are now also supposed to be mentors and active support-system. They need to develop emotional intelligence for being better role models, and social intelligence to foster meaningful connections.As a teacher, you can do some really simple things to build a positive connection with your students:
- Observe their nonverbal behavior: When it comes to students, their ability to understand depends a lot on their willingness to understand. So it is important to have a real-time connect to their changing emotional state. By learning the scientific basis of how nonverbal behavior represents emotions and then correctly interpreting their expressions, gestures and postures for understanding emotions and detecting deception, you can customize your own behavior to establish a connection.
- Let them finish:Students, in spite of all the confidence they flaunt to have, are vulnerable in their self-esteem. As a teacher, it is important for you to help them raise their self-esteem. The best way to do it is by encouraging them to voice their opinions and questions without being defensive, critical or impatient. You should let them finish first and then respond to the point as well as what lies beneath that point.
- Keep your biases and preferences aside:Teachers are also human beings. They also store experiences, get offended, seek approval, and crave for respect. However, by virtue of their role, and the responsibilities that come with it, they cannot afford to miss out on practicing the essential quality of emotional intelligence for maintaining emotional hygiene, self-regulation and adaptability. You should know what lies beneath your attitude and behavior and deal with it to offset undue biases and impulsive preferences.
Teachers should remain students of life, for life. This will help them understand what it takes, means and feels to be a student, and build strong teacher-student connection.
Dr. Sandeep Atre (Founder-Director, Socialigence)