3 Easy Tips to Help Students Get More Inspired in The Classroom
As teachers, it is our duty to bring out the best in our students. One way of doing that is inspiring confidence in them. I have listed three simple tips you can incorporate in your class, whether it's online or offline, to achieve that.
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This post was written by our TEFL certification graduate Aileen P. Please note that this blog post might not necessarily represent the beliefs or opinions of ITTT.
First, help them overcome nervousness. Some students are too afraid to make mistakes. They get really nervous and think about their answers for too long. You must make them understand that communication is more important than perfection. Being too conscious about mistakes does not only hinder the students to be more spontaneous, but it also prevents them from stepping out of their comfort zones. Students tend to play it safe when they are nervous. I once had a student who smarts but she is afraid to make mistakes. She keeps her sentences short and the structure is most basic. I try to encourage her to use different kinds of sentence structures. I try not to point out her mistakes while doing so. Instead, I give a lot of reassurance that it's okay to try. Commend your students every time they try to step out of their comfort zones. It means they are actively trying to improve. That is not something easy when you're shy. One technique that I use when the student is really anxious is pausing and asking them to relax. This usually happens during an exam or when they are about to give a presentation. I simply ask them to breathe deeply and smile. Sometimes, I try to crack a joke too. Eventually, I would notice that they would relax a little bit. This kind of situations is a part of the learning experience of the student. If not handled well, this can be traumatic for a student, making him or her hesitant to try. This is why it's really important that teachers are sensitive about the student's needs and how to address their student's emotions such as nervousness.
Second, Establish rapport with your students. I've mentioned about cracking jokes every now and them and asking students to relax. It should not end there. Building better relationships with our students will help us make a connection during class. The dictionary meaning of rapport is a close and harmonious relationship in which the people or groups concerned understand each other's feelings or ideas and communicate well. No teacher can deny its importance. There are several ways we can build rapport with our students. Learn about your students and be genuinely interested in them. Make sure that this is reflected in your class. As much as you can, call them by their names and use personally relevant examples. Talk about their hobbies, interests, and dreams in class. Listen well to them and make them feel respected. Student appreciates it when they feel like you are interested in what they say.
Third, Give positive feedback and constructive criticisms. Evaluation plays a vital role in the teaching-learning process. It can take many different forms. Whether it's a simple correction or an assessment, teachers must also take note of the student's reactions. Of all people, we, teachers know how our students respond to criticisms. Some take it well, others don't. That is why we must be sensitive and provide the necessary support. Teachers must be fair and consistent when giving feedback. I suggest using the Sandwich Feedback technique. It is a three-step procedure which involves discussing corrective feedback that is sandwiched between two layers of praise. This is an effective way of softening the impact of criticism.
These are just simple tips you can use in your class. In the end, it's you who get to interact with your students on a daily basis and it's you who know what's best for them. Just keep in mind that a little effort to show that you care goes a long way.
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