Connecting Your Education Staff to the Heart of the Matter: Kids
– July 6, 2016
It's hard to make sure we empower our children to succeed. Kids are more stressed than ever. They have to deal with school, part-time jobs, before and after school enrichment opportunities – and they have to deal with all of this in a world that's more connected than at any other point in human history.
That's a lot to take in, and in this, both educators and parents share a similar job. We have to guide these children through the gauntlet and build them into the leaders that the future will need. We have to instill work ethic, curiosity, and creativity – and we have to do it when kids are more distracted than ever.
Why We Can't Lose Focus on the Kids – They're the Future
Your education staff is building leaders. The children you teach today are the future of tomorrow. But if you think back to your favorite teachers, the ones that made a major impression on you growing up, you'll come to realize it wasn't always the lessons they taught – it was how they taught. They were able to connect with you in a way that was different from other teachers. They weren't standing in front of a chalkboard reciting material. They weren't making you copy down hundreds of pages of notes. And they weren't constantly surprising you with pop quizzes. Rather, they knew that every student is different, and that different students learn in different ways. They focused on making a connection and teaching to you in a way that you would understand.
So then the question becomes – what do you have to do to connect your education staff with the children they're building into leaders?
Connecting Your Staff to the Kids to Make Improvements in Programs
It takes two things to make an educational program work: a willing teacher and an attentive student. Any education program you devise will only go as far as the teacher is willing to take it. That's why it's imperative you match up your educators with the topics they're passionate about. Find what drives your educators to do what they do, and focus on those core motivators. Also recognize that certain teachers will be better at teaching certain students. When you're matching up educators and students, you have to recognize that it's part science and part art. Technology can make it easier to know which kids you should expect to be teaching that day – try to match up the educators that work best with those children, if at all possible.
Expectations of Greatness
Kids are more stressed and they have more expected of them than ever before. Today's children are expected to not only succeed, but to excel. They feel they need to be the best in their class, the best at their job, and the best on their sports team or in their theater group. While adults recognize these expectations of greatness may be unrealistic – no one can be the best at everything – kids and teenagers don't always have that perspective. Therefore, it's imperative that educators are able to connect with kids and help guide expectations throughout their education. By doing this, educators will help develop a healthy generation of future leaders.