One of the best teaching stories out there is the one that involves kids. Children can sometimes be unpredictable, directly upfront and transparent, and reactive. At the same time, they’re naturally participative (especially if they’re hooked), they ask a lot of questions, and, for the most part, don’t easily shy away.
So all these innate qualities you expect a learner should possess are already there within the kids. The challenge now is how you tap on these great qualities and allow these things to help them in the process of learning.
Consider these following tips in teaching kids, and save yourself the hassle of overthinking.
1. Establish simple rules. Structure is important in teaching, and reminding your kids of simple rules will help you as a teacher and your student maintain a good flow during your lessons. Note:Other teachers allow their students the chance to come up with simple rules themselves. This way, it becomes a collaborative act, which then makes the students feel that what they say also means a lot.
2. Always address your students by their names. This simple act of acknowledging a student’s name shows that you want to establish a connection with him/her.
3. Show, don’t tell. Most children don’t like to be told what to do. They rather follow what their instincts tell them. Spoon-feeding your students with lessons all the time doesn’t help. Soon, you’ll realize they’ll get bored. Show them how it’s done. They’ll most likely follow your lead.
4. Establish trust with them. Kids are very perceptive and are highly keen about people they want or don’t want. Think twice on how you’ll correct your students’ mistakes. Sometimes, first impressions last.
5. Make sure you do not only communicate with your mouth but also with your eyes. Eye contact will help you decide your students’ mood.
6. Structure your lessons well. Knowing what your goals are at the beginning of the lesson will help you chart your progress. Then nearing the end of the class, ask yourself, Have I met my goals for today?
7. Always use reassuring words. Power words. Words like, “Great job!” or “That’s wonderful!” bolster confidence in your students. But know when not to overuse them.
8. Be respectful to your students. But also know when to assert your authority when the occasion calls for it.
9. As much as your job as a teacher is to teach, listening is also very important. What they don’t say is as important as what they say.
10. Remember that as a teacher, you facilitate their learning. So be the best facilitator of knowledge for them.