Taking the time to get to know your students, their goals, their strengths, and their challenges will help them feel welcome and valued in the classroom. Make sure you plan opportunities for all students to share about themselves and build-in some check-ins throughout the semester.
Kind gestures are sweet, but they don’t have to be sweets. Taking the time to give some additional feedback, coach students through challenges, and connect them with resources keep them feeling connected and supported.
Students are their own worst critics, so try to be the encouraging voice. The quality and tone of interactions between students and faculty determine whether they feel inclined to attend classes, which is vital to success.
Faculty with a strong sense of purpose as educators are the ones who students describe as the most relevant and responsive to their needs. Even when your energy stores are low, remember the reasons for getting into the profession that inspire you.
When conflict is brewing in the classroom or among colleagues, be the one to model direct communication that is designed to increase understanding rather than inflame the situation. A little bit of compassion for others’ feelings and needs goes a long way.
And, finally, remember that you put in a good day’s work, and there will always be more to do. Each night when you finally rest your head on your pillow, try to remember what you accomplished each day rather than fretting about what you didn’t get to.