A walk and talk with Prof Lauren

Pontian Kabeera

Not so long ago, a student came to class with a very unsociable look, he looked annoyed and very disturbed yet this is the boy who had always been very happy in class and always keen to learn.

In the course of the class, I decided to put the students in groups to discuss a certain concept. The boy went out instead and never came back, not only in class but decided to suspend school until recently when he sent me a message narrating what happened to him. As a result, he earned himself a suspension from school. This experience left me regretting why I didn’t call him and talk to him; probably I would have helped him.

Little did I know that I would soon become a student as well, though my class is slightly different from the one I was conducting back home as it is comprised of mature students with deep-seated responsibilities and now miles away from home, including some who left their young families behind in pursuit of knowledge.

In just a week, many looked tired and wished to take the next day’s flight back home. However, before they could take to such extremes, a well-trained Professor Lauren, as she prefers being addressed,  had already observed the situation and decided to have a walk and talk time with each and every new student. From that moment to date, the learning environment changed, people’s motivation has been rejuvenated and its now home away from home.

Well, as a mentor it’s important that we understand the emotional status of the children we teach. They experience a lot of problems, ranging from social, to economic and healthy, which impede their concentration in class and thus compromising their content masterly and love for studies.

Therefore, creating an environment where learners find solace in teachers will improve the aspect of classroom management and the quality of students’ performance, which will eventually wade off cases of drop-outs.

We need to underscore that teachers are the best parents; they stay with children for the bigger part of their lives, and they should therefore be able to shape them with the alternative models of adult authority to shape their ability when it comes to regulating their emotions as well as interpreting emotional signals.

Student’s emotional development helps them explore the environment whilst playing their significant role in developing and reflecting on their own beliefs.

The writer is a PhD student of Comparative Education