By observing ourselves, our actions and our choice of words; we become aware of the power we have to influence others. Understanding that every moment of our life is meaningful and reinforces our values and beliefs as individuals and as members of the community is both shocking and enlightening at the same time. Being conscious of our words and the methods we use is our responsibility, especially as teachers and parents. Every sentence that comes out of our mouth reinforces an idea.
What kind of thinking and behavior are we reinforcing today with our language?
1. Awareness is the first step. Keep a journal, record your voice with a tape recorder or take a video of the children reactions with a video camera while interacting with children. Believe me, it is a painful process for your ego but a wonderful learning experience. Then, identify the words or sentences that are not consistent with your thinking or philosophy.
2. Find alternatives for the words that send a mix message or reinforce the wrong idea. Think about different ways to communicate your idea, and the meaning they have for the person receiving your message.
3. Practice, test, observe and go back to step 1.