Connection and feeling connected and loved are very important in every field. Just imagine entering a meeting room or a classroom where you don’t have seats available, or you don’t know any single soul in the room. Do you think you will have a positive feeling or will not feel scared or shy?
A sense of personal effect is a basic need for each human same like food and shelter. It is very important to feel connected and comfortable in a new place and this also plays an important role in success. It helps to cope up with the challenges and enhances the ability to see value in life.
International students should feel stay connected and this will make them feel relaxed, friendly, and motivated. In classroom training, the sense of belonging and integrity has a huge impact and is a core to academic success. It is important to make sure that classrooms are inclusive to support learning.
When that sense of connection is there, students feel comfortable and throw themselves into the learning environment. But when that feeling of connection is not there, they feel alienated and step back. Feeling of staying connected encourages, motivates, and helps to perform in academic.
International students should feel connected in foreign countries; otherwise, they will feel loneliness, hinder personal growth, lower motivation level. Below mentioned are few points which can be practiced in the classroom to make the students feel connected:
Show interest in students: As an educator, it is important to show interest in international students. That surely doesn’t mean to show over personal interest but something within the profession of teaching. Like assigning essays based on their experience and opinions, practicing active participation and student-centred learning.
Set standards and expectations: An Educator should help international students to learn the language in which classroom discourse. It is to be understood that each student is different; thus, the commonality will be educational materials and assignments.
Be sensitive to needs and emotions: Like all fingers are not same similarly, all students are not same. Thus, stop comparing and keep motivating. Some students may take the time to participate in group discussion. Consider other ways to participate in discourse like a class blog or journaling.
Supportive and learning surroundings: Make the classroom environment comfortable for international students. Provide support and help to learn. Talk about stories of failure, which then converted into success.
Make an introduction and get started: As an educator, introduce yourself to the class and explain your opinion of how your class will be for this year. Get to know each student by their name, especially international students so that they feel connected. Do an ice breaker session which will help by providing the personal narrative for each student.
Teacher-Student relationship: Take out time to do one-on-one meetings with foreign students to know them more. This will allow the opportunity to discuss their needs and share their doubts.
A warm smile and a sympathetic ear will make these international students more comfortable day after day and month after month. It is significant to encourage students and step further with trust. Students need to be given a safe and supportive space which will enable learning.
In a classroom, there are varieties of students coming from a different life, background, and experience; thus, it is important to give them a sense of connection, making them feel equal by giving respect. International Students who felt loving, caring, and appreciated have proved to have a higher level of satisfaction and teamwork.