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  • Dr. Brian Dinkins

How Emotional Intelligence Builds Champion Teachers


Emotional intelligence, or the ability to understand and manage one's own emotions and the emotions of others, can be very impactful for teachers in supporting their students. Leading research has found that there are many ways practicing emotional intelligence can build champion teachers who can help students -- particularly those from low-income, at-risk backgrounds -- achieve and excel in school.  Here are some of the many reasons you should consider emotional intelligence a skill necessary to build champion teachers:

  1. Emotional intelligence helps build rapport: There is no doubt that teachers who are emotionally intelligent are better able to connect with students of all backgrounds and build strong relationships with them. By understanding their students' emotions, teachers can create a safe and supportive environment where students feel valued and understood.

  2. Emotional intelligence helps manage student behavior: Emotional intelligence allows teachers to identify and respond to the emotional needs of their students because extends teacher's toolbox and range of response skills. When teachers can recognize the emotions that are driving a student's behavior, they can respond in a more compassionate and effective way that gets to the root behavior, instead of only addressing the presently displayed actions.

  3. Emotional intelligence teachers social skills: Emotional intelligence is closely tied to social skills like empathy, communication, and collaboration. Teachers who model these skills and create opportunities for students to practice them can help students develop these important life skills, while practicing them in a safe, nurturing classroom environment before practicing them in real life.

  4. Emotional intelligence supports mental health: Students who struggle with mental health issues may benefit from teachers who are emotionally intelligent and are able to provide support and resources. Teachers who understand the impact of mental health on learning can create a more inclusive and supportive learning environment for all students.

Emotional intelligence can help educators create a more supportive and effective learning environment for all of their students. By recognizing and responding to their students' emotional needs, teachers can help their students achieve academic success and develop important life skills.

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