The best teachers are often concerned when their students have serious personal issues. Fortunately, there are ways to ease the symptoms of anxiety in the classroom and for creative arts activities outside of the classroom. Here’s some advice for teachers who honestly want to help their student.
Make Time for Them
Part of being a great teacher is making time for students who need you. Let them know that your door is always open if they have any personal issues they need addressed. If they are struggling with learning choreography for a dance, memorizing lines for a theater production, or need a few extra minutes of vocal practice to prepare for an audition, giving them a little extra attention can go do a lot to relieve some of their anxiety.
Paying attention to their feelings will make your life and theirs less stressful. Be aware of any students who may be bullied by their peers and defend them if necessary. Use this time to discuss with students how you can better address their strengths and weaknesses. The classroom will be healthier and happier in the long run for everyone.
Give Extra Credit
Offering opportunities for extra credit is a nice way to make life easier for students. The need to succeed can take a serious toll on students’ overall attitude and well-being. As no student is perfect, he/she will feel better knowing that if their grades begin to slip, they have something to fall back on.
If you notice that your students’ grades aren’t what they should be, make them aware of ways that they can make up work or earn extra credit like performing a song, monologue or dance that focuses on specific points taught during a unit. You can also encourage tutoring or after-school help if necessary.
Empower Students to Succeed
Teachers have the responsibility to empower students by giving them the knowledge they need to succeed. Inform them on how to keep track of their grades and GPA, so they feel informed and empowered. If students feel too uncertain about their abilities, their anxiety levels may rise. If you see this in a student, you can pull them aside to teach them some strategies on how they can approach their schoolwork. Sharing some strategies on how to plan out homework and organize their tasks can make a big difference.
Being empowered with the right information can motivate students to change any situation for the better. Teachers should not only provide students with knowledge but should nurture the talents that each student has. That is what Manuel Creative Arts Academy strives to do; nurture the musical, theatrial, and dance talents of its students and encourages them to find success through using their talents.
Encourage Therapy if Needed
If a student comes to you with problems you aren’t equipped to handle, the best thing to do may be to suggest therapy, or at least a visit with the school counselor. Counselors are professionally trained to assist students with their academic, personal, and social development, and they’re often located on the school campus. Talk to their parents and mention that you’ve noticed behaviors that may be helped with professional counseling. It’s wise to be aware of any students who may have anxiety or other mental health issues. Educate yourself on symptoms such as an anxious demeanor, lower grades than normal, intense emotions, lack of ambition, and lethargy.
Students may not have the knowledge or resources they need to get help for their anxiety. They need responsible adults they can trust to direct them to the help they need. A trusted professional can teach them more techniques for how to deal with the stress that comes from attending a creative arts school. Teachers need to be aware of, and keep an eye out for, the signs of stress. This can be difficult in the modern age if you don’t have one on one time with the student, or if the student is remote and you’re a teacher in a virtual school but it’s imperative teachers keep their eyes open.
Creative education can be a way to help a child manage their anxiety. It teaches them how to communicate better so they can express what is bothering them and it will help them gain back their lost confidence. Check out how our creative education programs can help your child today!