Having quiet and peaceful students in the classroom is every teacher's dream. But "too quiet" students can become a nightmare for the teachers than those who are "too outgoing". This is because students who are struggling with social anxiety and diffidence often become a tough task for teachers. To get them out of their shells and participate in social and academic activities becomes impossible for a teacher. Here is when technology comes into play.
The old-school methods of reaching out to shy students were to force them into group projects or call them out in class to speak. These tactics often resulted in increasing the targeted student anxiety level rather than boosting his/her confidence. The enforced engagement had an adverse effect on students who secretly pray not to be called in front of the class or be assigned to projects where forceful communication is required.
To have a proper understanding of what method works best with anxiety fighting students it is important to understand what anxiety is. As defined by the Association of America, social anxiety is the intense fear of being judged, worry about a negative evaluation or social rejection. According to stats, in the United States, social anxiety disorder affects 18.1% of the population every year. This means that almost 40 million adults have a form of anxiety disorder. Moreover, in a 2018 National College Health Assessment, it was found that 63% of college students in the United States faced society in the past years.
While there are many reasons why a student goes through the phase of social anxiety, here we are going to limit our discussion to the role of technology in fighting stress.
Technology and Shy Students
The emergence of technology in educational sectors has proven to benefit the industry in tons of ways. From advance learning via machine learning programs and artificial intelligence to limiting the cost in education sectors, technology has proven to be much needed in the traditionally setup system. Other than this, technology has helped the shy and deficient students in overcoming their fears of rejection and being judged negatively.
While curating this article we found out that the students struggling with social anxiety struggle with performing well academically. This is because their core focus becomes escaping situations where communication is necessary or where their participation is required. And while they are in a constant battle to overcome their fears they unconsciously start losing their focus on academics.
Having said this, we have listed down some of the digital tools that can help shy students perform better in classrooms:
One of the greatest struggles of a student that faces a lack of confidence is to have communication with his/her instructor. While the instructor believes they are trying their best to have a conversation with their quiet students, it often goes in waste. This communication gap with the instructor and other class fellows often increases the student's social anxiety and fear of social rejection.
In such a case, students are recommended to bring technology into use. Blogging is a digital tool that gives voice to the quietest people.
If you are a teacher that wants to encourage its shy student to open up in front of the class and participate in activities all you need to do is start a blogging platform. Through this, you can encourage all the students to write down whatever they feel like discussing or what is important to them. Students can even comment and share each other published blogs.
To make this happen all you need to do is have a reliable and stable internet connection in the classroom. If you’re reading this article from Charlotte, NC then Hughesnet offers the best Hughesnet plans with highest internet speed.
Online Chat Rooms
As we said above, enforced discussions and communication isn’t the greatest method to help shy students fight social anxiety. What you can do as a teacher and instructor is to take discussions online.
By creating an online chat room with your students, you can help encourage the quiet students into speaking up what they feel like. This way you can facilitate the students by not putting them into the light and limiting the chances of them struggling with stress.
A former high school teacher, Christina Lovdal Gil says that by engaging with students through live documents let her understand and communicate with her shy students better.
Through live documents, teachers can give immediate feedback to students and avoid public dialogue worth the quiet students who might end up feeling disturbed with public negative feedback.
Technology has helped in facilitating the education sector in achieving its objectives. Moreover, technology also helps teachers and instructors in dealing with shy and under confident students in classrooms. By helping students understand the technology and digital tools mentioned in the write-up above, teachers can help them in participating in social and academic activities.