(from Faculty Focus) Empowering Students through Your Personal Narrative. Any teacher wants their students to feel engaged and enthusiastic in the classroom, connected and thriving through daily activities and course content. Of course, establishing that rapport and environment is a bridge that needs to be built every day, through every interaction, in any course. It’s not one action, or intervention, or step. But one intentional step that many teachers take is to create some introduction material for the course. Whether it’s an announcement or a video, a block of text or an audio snippet, instructors often go out of their way to say hello as students walk through the “doors” of the online classroom.
By leveraging your personal narrative—articulating your “why” and demonstrating your dedication—you can take steps to ensure that students feel more engaged and oriented within your new course, and that they feel comfortable and connected with you as their instructor. And while you can definitely spell this all out in words, and embellish with pictures, video has been shown to be a very dynamic way to connect with students.