Teaching is a challenging job, especially in these changing times. Many years of teaching have enabled educators to have a special bond with students. We have to do it again from scratch in the post-pandemic world. All said and done; online classes didn’t do justice to students’ drive and creativity. Being away from school, they lost a little bit of their connection with their teachers or mentors.
Here are my tips for connecting again with students on campus-
1) Teachers need to get to know the students better by trying to understand their thoughts, needs, and problems. Teaching on campus is in stark contrast to teaching online, and the chances are that you’ll need to work from the ground up to know your learners.
2) Become a student yourself and talk to them in a language style they would understand or prefer. You can initiate a conversation with a decent joke or meme to grab their attention!
3) Leave the idea of self-respect and ego aside. It sounds harsh but is a reality for all educators. We get agitated when students try to correct us or because of our fundamental human nature. However, we need to move past those issues to build genuine connections with them again.
4) Ask them, “How are you?” outside of the class. Take any opportunity to reach out!
5) It is essential to make students feel comfortable in the classroom. Alternatively, students will fondly look back on their online schooling days, dreaming of times when they were not visible.
6) All opinions and suggestions while having a group discussion are important! Draw out the quiet ones by giving them tasks that play to their strengths to feel appreciated.
7) Tell your students your survival or inspirational story. Students will trust you more and feel like you have opened up to them, and they can do the same with you.
8) Don’t run towards the completion of the syllabus. Instead, chase the connection that is crucial for the kids. The curriculum will get covered easily if the students understand you personally and want to listen to you!
10) Play with them if possible. It is a scientific fact that playing partners are the most positive partners. You can include teaching and learning moments while playing, but it shouldn’t be more than 10 minutes of talking on a single topic.
Reaching out again isn’t easy, but these tips should get you started on the journey of bonding with your students once again!
Seema Yadav has been working in education since 2012 and enjoys bringing positive changes in student-teacher relationships. Striving to reach her full potential, she joined San Marino Public School, Indore as the Coordinator for Nursery to Grade 5 in 2020 where she worked with teachers as a trainer. She has also had opportunities to interact with middle and senior school students. Her tag line is, “I try to be a solution to my student’s problems.”