Part II: How Good Teachers Create Good Decision Makers Out Of Their Students?
We already discussed the importance of making good decisions. In the second part of the article, we discuss how teachers can encourage students to acquire the necessary skills.
Teachers want their students to make good choices – whether they are academic, social, or emotional. Decision-making skills help students to gain confidence and become independent. With strong encouragement, students learn to differentiate between good and bad decisions, start trusting their gut, and rely on themselves whenever faced with a difficult situation. Teachers are in a position to foster a classroom environment that helps them nurture good decision-makers. Here is how they can do it.
The trust placed in the students to carry out a responsibility or make the right choices instills confidence in a child. Good teachers believe in their students. This belief makes students feel responsible, and they put more thought into doing the tasks assigned to them. Teachers who always concentrate on the shortcomings of their students, end up with tired and stubborn students who do not take responsibility for their actions or their consequences.
Listen to Them
Good teachers provide students space where they can speak their mind. This is an essential part of a good decision-making process. Ask students how they arrived at a decision and afford them the time to explain themselves and provide feedback. This will inculcate accountability into their decisions. Children make impulsive and snap decisions. However, when they have an authority figure who wants to understand their decisions, they will put more thought into it. This process will also help them feel that the decisions they are making are important and add to their self-worth.
Good decision-making is a skill, and it takes time to master. So, it will be wrong to expect students to make the best decisions right away. They need proper guidance and room to make mistakes before they can start making better decisions. This can be done by teaching decision-making skills as part of the curriculum and engaging students in class and outdoor activities that require them to make decisions. Such low-impact decisions are critical learning tools. They will help students take the difficult first step towards decision-making and then step back and analyze their consequences on others. Programs like SEL Adventures provide students all the tools they need to create good decision-makers out of their students.
Good decision Makers Can Change the World
Teachers are the agents of change. When they listen, understand, and coach students to become good decision-makers, they are creating productive members of the community. When every member understands the gravity of the decisions they take, it can uplift whole communities to be better versions of themselves and thrive.