Emotions are at the heart of what teachers do and why they do it. Educators come to teaching with dreams of changing the odds for disadvantaged children, inspiring a love for learning, or developing critical thinkers. Research has found that students learn better in safe, supportive environments. The same is true for adults. Social and emotional competencies are influenced by context. If your work environment is full of gossip and complaints, you will tend to display more negative behaviors; while if you work in a supportive, welcoming school, you will be more inclined to successfully manage stress and ask for or offer help when needed. Think about your current workplace. How is it affecting your behavior and the ways in which you relate to students and colleagues? Are you able to show your “better self”? Being aware of how your work environment affects your behavior will help you make different choices if necessary.
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