Tip #3: Care about your students
Effective teaching requires a ‘professionally emotional’ connection to exist between teachers and their students
I feel that this crucial aspect of teaching is not covered enough by teacher-training providers, possible because there is confusion as to how to plug this correctly.
I’m going to clear this up for everyone now – if we do not sincerely, genuinely care about our students then nothing we do will work optimally.
It is unrealistic to believe that every teacher entered the profession because it was their first choice or vocation. For me, I always wanted to be a teacher because I genuinely wanted to make a difference in young people’s lives. Rightly or wrongly, however, many have ‘fallen into’ teaching because of the relative security the job provides in times of economic uncertainty and crises, as well as the attractive perks that come along with it (such as the long holidays).
That’s the reality, I’m sorry to say, but the truth still stands – teachers who really, genuinely care about the performance and welfare of their students are always the best teachers.
When we care about our students, the following processes happen naturally as a result:
- We have one-on-one conversations with our students about their goals, dreams, career-ambitions, hobbies and life-situations
- We encourage and motivate our learners by recognizing significant achievements and giving our sincere, meaningful praise along the way
- We use data to form the basis of discussions with students when their grades start to slip, or when they show significant progress.
- We also use our judgement and experience to decide when a student is just ‘cruising along’ when he or she could be achieving far more.
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