New Delhi: The care of students during their time in school is greatly influenced by the teachers. According to research, teachers have a significant impact on children. They are the area of the educational system that most significantly affects the lives of students.
As a result, the greatest influence on how well students’ social, emotional, and mental health are taken care of in addition to their academic performance.
It might be challenging to determine when and how to offer assistance.
Check out 5 ways teachers can do to help student’s mental health:
1. Build a healthy environment together
a. Asking students for suggestions on how to create a welcoming, comfortable, and safe environment in the classroom is step one.
b. Encourage pupils to communicate with one another and to listen to one another. They are frequently the first to notice when someone is down and are best equipped to relate to and assist them. Taking care of one another is essential to creating a strong community.
c. Incorporate activities aimed at fostering a sense of mutual understanding and belonging while getting to know one another better.
2. Listen to them
Students frequently value being heard and feeling seen above all else. If students come to you for assistance, they likely have confidence and comfort in you. Teachers should only concentrate on giving the student their undivided attention while listening to their experiences and feelings in these circumstances rather than worrying about solving problems or providing the best advice.
Even if you want to, it might be challenging to reduce the amount of time you spend with students at large schools and during busy days. You can try a few of these in these circumstances:
a. Request that they keep a journal that you can read at a later time.
b. On particular days, provide lunch together. Making it available exclusively on specific days makes it manageable and less stressful for you as well.
c. Offer a period either before or after school.
3. Always check in with them
a. You may already be aware of some pupils who experience emotional and mental health issues. Visit these students frequently. Asking them how they are doing and whether they need any more assistance can be done in brief, two-minute checkups at the start and end of the day or term. Daily or even weekly performance is acceptable. The frequency is determined by the needs of the student.
b. Some kids might engage in disruptive behaviour, such as shouting in class, picking fights, making fun of other students, etc. We frequently attempt to support this with potentially severe disciplinary measures. Consider these behaviours as students’ means of expressing their anguish and inability to carry out their responsibilities. When viewed from this angle, teachers can check in with the student, attempt to determine or comprehend what kind of support the student requires, and then assist in getting that support. Most of the time, when someone observes and inquires about their situation, pupils feel cared for and comforted.
4. Watch out for concerning signs
Be on the alert for sudden, drastic changes in a student’s conduct that interfere with their ability to learn or have social relationships. Some alterations are normal and developmentally acceptable. Therefore, it might be something to further investigate if and when serious changes in mood and behaviour linger for at least two weeks. If a problem is solvable, teachers should help struggling pupils by offering a variety of suitable support.
Teachers must work with the counselling team or leaders of their school to determine the best way to meet the needs of the students when they feel they could use some direction or feel the need for a more qualified expert to address their concerns.
5. Be a role model
For students, teachers serve as role models. Teachers are always being observed by students, who also benefit from their enthusiasm and knowledge. They will watch you and pick up the coping mechanisms you employ in trying circumstances. Be as collected, compassionate, and truthful as you can. Take care of your mental health, and let your pupils know that you value and practice it every day to manage stress and live a good life.
Teachers and kids have a unique bond. As a result, teachers frequently recognize when a student is experiencing emotional difficulty and may require more care.
Particularly after the pandemic, teachers have begun to deliberately assist pupils’ emotional health. It’s critical to understand how to assist both your own and your student’s mental health and well-being to establish a secure and encouraging learning environment.