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Professor Emeritus Robert Goodwin III Interviewed: Making Influential Student Connections During Virtual Learning

Robert Goodwin III

Professor Robert Goodwin III

NEW YORK, NEW YORK, UNITED STATES, September 22, 2020 / -- As we enter the start of a new school year, teachers and parents across the world are struggling with uncertainty. While the focus is on the safety of our students, many questions remain unanswered.

How long will this last?

Will the quality of the virtual learning experience be compelling enough to keep students engaged?

Will students be able to receive the necessary social interaction that schools provide to ensure they are well equipped to handle social interactions?

In this article, Professor Robert Goodwin III, a distinguished ethical leader, points out some helpful tips for teachers looking to make influential connections with their students.

The responsibility of a teacher is not one to be taken lightly. This is due to the amount of influence you are capable of exerting on the students you teach and how your connection with them can affect their performance. The case is that a strong connection between teachers and students is a powerful predictor of students’ academic, social, and personal success in school.

Many students are struggling with various issues ranging from hard home lives to peer pressure and peer acceptance. Some may still be trying to find out who they are and what they want to achieve in life. Therefore, as a teacher, though you may not be your students’ primary influence, you spend several hours each week with them, and so you have an excellent chance to become a mentor and a life-long influence.

To establish such influential connections and build a good relationship with your students, you will need to employ certain teaching strategies that focus on active and authentic daily interactions and instructions.

According to Professor Robert Goodwin III, “Every student has something they are passionate about, something you can key into to develop influential connections them. For instance, addressing students by their names regularly shows that they are memorable. Finding out what your students enjoy inside and outside of the classroom is a great way to form a connection.”

Another strategy to try is to create room for personal conversations with your students. These personal conversations will allow you to know what is going on in the lives of your students generally, what it is like at home and the challenges they face. It will also help to give you an understanding of why the difficult students are acting out and so, provide insights into how you can relate with them to make them more responsive.

While interacting with your students, in-person or virtual, you may learn about things that can stir their interest in the class. It would be helpful if you can find creative ways to integrate what you learned from them into your lessons. This will lead to increased student participation in classes, higher involvement, and a boost in learning.

“Mutual respect is vital to building an influential connection with your students. Students never respect or try to relate with teachers who fail to see that they deserve immense respect as well. Don’t be afraid, to be honest with your class. Your students can appreciate your willingness to open up and share your world with them. ” Says, Professor Goodwin.

Fundamentally, students and teachers will find the experience of virtual learning difficult, because it can't possibly meet their expectations for the socialization that they most want from school education. Classroom engagement, interaction with professors, socializing with other students will take tremendous effort to inject into online learning in ways that can satisfy students, parents, and teachers.

About Professor Robert Goodwin III

Professor Emeritus Robert Goodwin III BBA, MPA, Ph.D. (HC), DLitt. has a distinguished record of ethical leadership and has served in many academic and senior leadership positions with Caucasus University. His honors and decorations include the Distinguished Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal w/OLC, Conspicuous Service Medal, Order of the Palmetto, Palmetto Cross, and the Freedom of the City of London.

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