Why is Teaching Empathy Important?
- October 5, 2020
- Posted by: The Teachers Academy
- Category: Online Courses
As the school year starts to get going, some teachers may be looking to fulfill as many of their continuing education credits online as possible. After all, such classes can often be unhelpful or boring, as they don’t reflect the classroom’s realities, and many teachers want to get them out of the way as a consequence.
However, it’s still important to choose your continuing education credits carefully, because they can provide benefits to your students. For example, learning how to teach empathy to students can have a lasting impact on their lives as a whole.
Here are the main reasons why teaching empathy is such a critical part of a student’s experience:
Emotional Intelligence Sets Students Up for Success
There’s been talk in recent years about the importance of emotional intelligence in a successful career, but learning those skills begins in the classroom. Teaching empathy to students involves getting them to understand the different components of empathy through instruction and modeling key behaviors.
Here are a few ways to teach empathy in the classroom.
Modeling is perhaps one of the most critical aspects of teaching empathy to students because it shows them how to manage their emotions and provides a safe space for them to experiment without worrying about harming their future.
It Improves Communication Skills
Teaching empathy can help improve students’ communication skills inside and outside the classroom. A core component of effective empathy is taking the time to understand another person’s perspective, empowering students to speak to each other and their teachers in a much more effective way than they might otherwise have done.
An additional benefit to teaching empathy comes from modeling the desired behavior because it forces teachers to engage with students differently. Showing how to engage with a student’s behavior will lead to fewer disruptions in class because students’ needs are being met, rather than being assumed.
It Fosters Civic Discussion
When looking at the broader picture, teaching empathy in the classroom has a broader impact on society as a whole, because it shows students that no one perspective is uniformly valid. As a skill, empathy involves understanding what contexts can lead to a particular behavior or perspective. A result of learning how to approach the world with empathy is that students are more likely to engage with different points of view in a meaningful way and facilitate discussions.
To find out more about the importance of teaching empathy, or to about our professional development programs available for teachers in Montgomery County, contact us today.