Teaching English is it not an easy task, and as future teachers we must recognize that we are going to be dealing with groups of different individuals and not a single student with 40 faces. Student are different in many ways. Some are quick, others are slow. Some are confident, others are shy. Some like working on groups, others are happier working alone. However; what they do have in common is the fact that they need to count on someone and most of the time is the teacher the one that plays that role.
Teachers must be aware of the student’s need and they must be empathic in order to influence the student to become a better person.
But, What does being empathic mean? According to David Smeeth, an experienced teacher from California, “empathic teaching is being sensitive to and understanding of my student’s experience, of the classroom environment, the subject matter, and myself as the teacher. I then do my best to demonstrate this empathy to my students by making calming statements and observations, such as:
I know this software can be intimidating.
I’ve been stuck with this problem too: it took me a long time to figure it out.
I know it can be hard to take a class when you already know most of what’s covered.
When I get stuck, the first thing I do is take a deep breath and remember to relax.
Understanding this topic takes awhile, just go easy on yourself and it will come.
... certain social distance; 54% felt that student/teacher dating was inappropriate, and 70% disapproved of student/teacher sexual relations (this was obviously a college ... issues associated with them.IIChoosing Typical InteractionsWhen we think of student-teacher interactions, several come to mind immediately. Probably the most typical ...
Stop me if I lose you or if I just seem to go on and on.
Answering your questions is my highest priority.”
For me, being empathic is the capacity of recognizing the other person’s feelings, problems, defects, qualities, and also knowing when someone needs your help. And empathic teaching will be developing that capacity in the classroom and to make the students realize that the teacher can not only be a guide, but also a friend that understands them and provides help any time they need it. It is important to make them feel that you care that they learn and about how they feel in the class. Both aspects are important in order to have a good relationship with them.
Being empathic will be useful for the teacher to know how he or she can provide the support that students need and make them know they are not alone and that we all have similar experiences in life which help us to understand other people’s problems. Also empathy can produce on the students an attitude of more interest and optimism.
As empathy is so important when working with people, it will be a good idea to give the students the chance to be empathic because not everybody has the quality of being empathic and if we can help our students to develop that I’m sure it will be gratifying for us.
But, How can we help our students to be empathic?
We can do humanistic activities in the classroom which allow the student to use perception and cognition. For instance, we can use flashcards where there appear people showing emotions. So the students will imagine the feelings of that person and will describe them and find out certain relationship between him, the picture, a situation, etc.
The idea is to let the students open themselves and let them learn not only a subject, but also important aspects that are part of their personality.