Mentor Teacher: What did you think of your lesson?
Student teacher: It didn’t go as well as I wanted.
Mentor Teacher: Yes, it WAS disappointing.
From that message on, the student teacher didn’t believe in himself as a future teacher. He questioned all his skills and abilities.
Professor: What would you change in your presentation? This audience is going out and a new audience is coming in. What will you tweak, change, take out, fix?
Teacher candidates: We wouldn’t look at our note cards as much.
Professor: Remember Q-TIP, ladies. This stands for “quit taking it personally.” All suggestions shared from your peers are to help ALL of us in this room to grow professionally.
Peers…what is one thing this group could improve on?
Peers: Your attire! Our field-experience mentor teachers would NEVER let us dress like that!
Unfortunately, the two teary-eyed teacher candidates took it personally.
Our verbal messages have the power to build up or knock down…all depending on our delivery methods.
I often express to our teacher candidates that delivery is almost more important than the words we choose when teaching. HOW we present our messages matter. Gestures, volume, tone, attitude, facial expressions, eye contact…body language. The mechanics of the delivery matter.
I read a story the other day of a gal who wanted to go into ministry. Her ‘friend’ encouraged her and told her she would be awesome at ministry. This friend told the gal she had the passion. She had the knowledge. She had the drive. She would be phenomenal at ministry. And then…the friend dropped the bomb that collapsed the gal’s spirit. “But first you should lose some weight because that is what others will see first.”
That last destructive sentence kept the gal from ministry for 17 years. Such a devastating outcome.
In the above scenarios, the friend and the peers and the mentor teacher did not intentionally mean to hurt anyone, their messages and words were misinterpreted.
Teachers and teacher candidates…we have great power. The power is in our words. In our messages. With this great power comes great responsibility.
Let’s be superheroes by being conscientious of the messages we are sending to our students. It is all in our delivery. Let us deliver messages that pack a positive punch! 🙂