Take center stage!
All eyes on you!
We often talk about being a role model but we tend to forget that we set examples even if we do not intend to.
Let’s be honest, we sometimes forget that our behaviour influences people and especially children around us. We ask them to behave in a certain way but we can be hypocrites. We tell children all the time not to shout and yell but sometimes we are the first persons to yell at kids when they do not behave as we would like them to, or we ask them never copy someone else’s work, but we ourselves use copy-paste from time to time.
We ask children to pay attention but we find ourselves being nonstop on our smartphones or we tell kids to be kind and friendly to anyone while we are mean to our colleagues or not treat people with respect.
The problem is that often we are not even aware of it.
We often do not notice that our voice, our words, our body and our behavior are not aligned. We therefore send unclear and sometimes decidedly inconsistent messages. This inconsistency takes away energy, authority and decreases the trust that young people place in us. Lacking awareness of the inconsistency in the message, we will hardly find an effective way to be recognized, listened to and valued by our students.
The good news is that communication can be improved. There are several activities that help us understand the messages we send explicitly and implicitly.
Being a teacher and entering the classroom is like going on stage to play our part. The actor is visible all times while being on stage.
Let’s not forget that we are visible to the public (students, colleagues, teachers and families) even if our “solo performance” ends, as long as we are in the school.
Even if we do not take the center stage, when we do not teach, in reality we are surrounded by spectators who absorb information, code behavior, elaborate theories.
Here is our suggestion how to improve your communication skills:
Set your mobile phone to vibrate in every 45 minutes.
When you hear the phone vibrate, pay attention to what you do at that moment, how your body, your back, your arms are positioned, how you speak (the tone you use, the speed of your speech etc).
Imagine looking at yourself from outside and briefly write the description of yourself in a notebook.
We are sure that this exercise will surprise you.