As our children get ready to head back to school, some will take the adustment of thier new environment in stride while others will lose sleep over it. For those children who are more sensitive to their environent, their success at school will likely depend on their teacher(s) skill at creating a nurturing and comfortable environmet to learn. Although a positive environemnt is important for all children, it becomes a necessity for a child with any type of communication, learning, or social emotional challenge. What a teacher does or doesn’t do on those first few days of school can have a huge impact on the rest of the year. Below are some reminders of just what makes a teacher more than a teacher from an article summarizing the lessons learned in the film, “The King’s Speech”.
5 Lessons For Educators From “The King’s Speech” by David Deubelbeiss(From his blog, When One Teaches,Two Learn”)
1. Values the importance of the “informal”, especially when dealing with language learning.
- Use of Humor
- First name basis
- Creative, flavorful language
2. Passion rates higher than credentials
3. Teaching is a developing relationship with each student
4. A Teacher’s belief in a child is what counts
5. Childhood development is crucial to long term success.
- importance of the early years
As parents we must be aware of our children’s needs as children first, and if their needs are met; learning will follow. We certainly can’t hand pick our children’s teachers each year, but we can make what is in our control count. Here are some basic questions to ask yourself when deciding what is important to share with your child’s teacher at the beginning of the school year:
1. Does competition motivate my child, or add pressure?
2. Does my child like attention, or cringe upon any pair of eyes watching?
3. Are nearby friends a help or a hinderance to my child?
4. Does my child need a calm enviornment or lots of stimulation to learn?
5. What works as a behavioral reinforcer- verbal praise, earning priveledges, certificate of achievement to bring home, etc.
6. Does my child require some assistance or cueing to transition to a new activity, or to navigate through a less structured part of the school day?
One more thing-
Try throwing questions out the window when your child comes home from school, and instead comment, and wait for a response. Keep waiting . Keep waiting. If nothing, try talking about yourself, and they will be sure to interupt you to talk about their day!
All my best,
Judy RosenfieldDirector, King’s Speech and Learning Center www. KingsSpeechandLearning. com