How you can be an inspiring role model for your students
When you ask most children what they want to become when they grow up,
they want to become a teacher.
From the time they start going to school, children look up to their teachers and aspire to be like them. If you are a teacher, you naturally become a role model as well.
What is a role model, though? A role model is someone who you aspire to be like. Someone who encourages you and inspires you to work harder and become a better person.
How can you become an effective role model for your students? Here are a few things to keep in mind:
If you want your students to value their time and the time of people they interact with, you have to set the example right. Make sure that you are on time, or even ahead of time, for the class or any other activities in school. Be organised. Don’t enter the classroom disheveled or unprepared.
Everybody makes mistakes, even teachers. The important thing is to admit it when you are wrong. There may be situations in which you have to apologise to your student or to the classroom. These are teachable moments because when you apologise it shows your students that they should set their ego aside. Admitting that you are wrong does not make you a smaller person.
Talk about your failures, not just your successes
Being a student is not easy when your teachers and parents have so many expectations from you. Children tend to be afraid of failure and may even take extreme steps when they are not able to do well in examinations or competitions. As a teacher, you should talk to them about the failures and challenges you faced in your life. Maybe you got rejected for a job or you failed one subject in High School. Talk to your students about how you felt and how you overcame that challenge. This will help children understand that other people face such challenges, too. It will teach them to accept failures as a part of life and learn from them.
Be Empathetic and Encouraging
Empathy is an important yet undervalued soft skill to have. Developing a strong sense of
empathy helps children become more tolerant and accepting of others, values which are key to a healthy society. You can teach your students empathy by example, through your interactions with them. Encourage them to think about people in difficult situations around the world, people who are less privileged than them. Empathise with your students, too, and encourage them when they need an extra push.