Tips for teachers to improve student engagement with meaningful connections - Hindustan Times
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Tips for teachers to improve student engagement with meaningful connections

ByZarafshan Shiraz, Delhi
Aug 25, 2022 08:00 PM IST

Creating strong teacher-student bonds is one of the finest strategies to support self-motivation in students as they learn to read, persevere and grow. Here's how teachers can improve student engagement by establishing meaningful connections

Teachers frequently work to increase parent involvement but student involvement is just as important as a student will be more likely to succeed if they are more self-motivated while they learn to read. Creating strong teacher-student bonds is one of the finest strategies to support this.

Tips for teachers to improve student engagement with meaningful connections (Max Fischer )
Tips for teachers to improve student engagement with meaningful connections (Max Fischer )

In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Sunita Tomar from Faculty of English at Shambhu Dayal Inter College in Ghaziabad shared, “Students need to feel that their teachers care about them and can guide and assist them, thus teachers must emotionally interact with them. When teachers try to incorporate all children, even those who tend to act out or perform poorly, academic attainment rises and off-task behaviours decline over time. Teachers' feedback is crucial for building relationships. Students who think their teachers are criticising them personally have bad feelings about the teachers and the relationship. In reality, students who get personal praise or criticism are less inclined to persevere and grow because they are more likely to feel unsatisfied with their work and themselves.”

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Getting to know your students on a personal level is one of the simplest and most efficient methods for increasing student engagement. In order for them to be engaged, driven, and successful, children need to experience a feeling of belonging because they spend 7-8 hours of their day in a classroom.

Teachers may foster a healthy learning environment where both relationships and education can grow by letting them know they are valued and recognized for who they are. They must always keep the end in mind when they must correct and discipline students: they want them to learn from their mistakes.

“To make sure their words and actions are always constructive forms of communication, teachers should think about how they come across to students. In addition to helping students learn from their mistakes, constructive criticism and appreciation are essential for developing and sustaining healthy teacher-student relationships. Students are more inclined to exert effort and strive toward achieving their goals while keeping pleasant and productive connections with their teachers when they perceive that future effort could lead to success. Getting to know one another better among teachers and students fosters a sense of community,” added Sunita Tomar.

Talking about developing positive relationships with students, Dr Jitin Chadha, Founder and Director of IIAD, said, “Student engagement is one of the fundamental requirements for creating a better learning environment. An organised classroom with engaged students who feel valued by the teacher is a perfect learning space for students to develop themselves academically as well as socially.”

Revealing a few proven ways of engaging students and enhancing their learning approach, he said, “Teachers should be mentors and the environment should be one of learning side by side with a well balanced teacher-student ratio to keep learners engaged. Students-Teacher relationship should not be a monologue or one way communication, it should facilitate knowledge dissemination. Teachers should provide ample opportunities to showcase their individuality and skills. Each student is special in their own way and teachers should assume the best in every student. Even in an authoritative environment, students should not hesitate to put their voices forward and teachers should not shy away from critical feedback. The way forward is to create a balanced learning environment where teachers-students both should feel comfortable and free to learn.”

According to Neelima Kamrah, Principal of KIIT World School in Gurugram, when you understand how improving teacher-student interactions can revolutionise your classroom, you can set up your entire school for long-term success. She highlighted, “Students with little resources are more likely to exhibit socially acceptable behaviour if their teachers act as mentors to them. Teachers should be active and consistent in giving feedback and responding to queries. However, these students can develop significantly when teachers make an effort to care about and support them. These connections can result in a classroom where students are motivated since they are so intimately related to self-motivation. A teacher should never speak in a nasty or demeaning way with students; they should be allowed to maintain their dignity. In addition to helping students learn from their mistakes, constructive criticism and appreciation are essential for developing and sustaining healthy teacher-student relationships. Teachers should ask for feedback from students.”

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