Wednesday, May 22, 2024

Avenues:How teachers have a profound impact on students’ life

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It is not an exaggeration to say that a teacher touches not only students’ minds but also their spirits — the way they see and feel about themselves for the rest of their lives. Having worked with teachers for more than a decade now, I can recall endless stories in which a positive relationship between teacher and student actually brought a very fundamental change in the student’s life.

Power of teacher-student relationships

When a teacher cares about their students, listens to them, is aware of their student’s learning, and adjusts their learning goals and expectations accordingly as needed, then they form a strong student-teacher relationship. It further involves getting to know your students better and encouraging them to become stronger and better human beings every day.This way, teachers also often act as counsellors or mentors to their students.

Most of the time, this is because a student feels more comfortable confiding in a teacher with whom they already have a rapport rather than the school counsellor. In light of the fact that teachers interact with students on a daily basis, they may be the first to detect a student’s issues.

All of this helps students’ mental health development with teachers on their side to understand and support them.

Development of social skills, day in and out

A classroom is the first place students develop their social skills, such as interacting with fellow students, doing things collaboratively and being mindful. These skills also form their non-verbal communication and emotional quotient.

Even on a regular day, in and out, every teacher handles a bunch of situations which develop the social skills of a student. For example, helping students acknowledge their performance in an exam, instructing how to move past an interruption and focus back in the classroom, guiding students on their body language and non-verbal communication, and providing opportunities for teamwork.

Steep academic learning and progress

Students under the influence of good teachers are more likely to absorb and retain knowledge. This happens because a good teacher makes learning fun, stimulating, and engaging-pivotal to a student’s academic success.

While the textbooks, online resources, and past papers form the content, teachers act as supplements to facilitate the learning and understanding of the fundamental concepts.
It is a teacher who analyses the needs of different students and their different learning styles to cater to well-rounded learning experiences for all students. Such learning environments promote academic achievement and help students unleash their true potential.

Career guidance and mentorship

Teachers also help students make important decisions about their futures. Students constantly need guidance with the new opportunities available to them. And global competition, product innovation, process development and advanced technology do not make the process any easier for the student.

Career goal-setting is one key role of a teacher that expands beyond the academic success of students. It’s often the career guidance received from their teachers that helps a student clearly define their goals based on their interests and abilities.

In the marketplace, soft skills such as leadership, integrity, civility, and interaction are essential. And more often than not, teachers play a critical role in helping students develop these skills.

Helping them become good people in life

Test scores capture only a fraction of how teachers are capable of impacting students, as not every skill needed in adulthood is well captured by performance on the standardised tests. Skills to become successful in life, such as self-management, resilience, willingness to learn, communication, teamwork skills, and a positive attitude-if not entirely-but partially are formed under the able guidance of teachers.

What’s next?

Teachers have a profound impact on students’ lives, from helping them do well in academics to enabling them to grow and develop as good people in life.However, to bring about such a long-standing impact, it is important for teachers to have certain skills. Bear in mind that teacher upskilling and student achievement are not only interlinked, but the latter is heavily dependent upon the former.As we proceed as a society towards enabling better education for students, educating and upskilling teachers to facilitate better education has to be a key focus for us.

(The writer, Rishabh Khanna, is the founder and CEO of Suraasa)

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