"Be easily in awe."
I first heard Grandmaster Jhoone Rhee use this line when he was explaining to a group of Martial Arts instructors how to best work with young children. I learned a lot from him about Martial Arts and teaching, but this was some of his best advice.
Do you remember a time when someone genuinely praised something you had accomplished and how good that made you feel? How about a time when you may have been overlooked or even been criticized about something you were proud of? How did each of these events affect you and your future choices and efforts? When you stop to think about it, you know the value of showing genuine excitement for and admiration of the accomplishments of your students, young and old.
So be sure to use this valuable teaching tool whenever you have the opportunity. This is especially important with younger people, but can be effective with adults as well. When you see a performance that is praiseworthy, be sure to give that praise with heartfelt sincerity. Even if it’s not perfect, be sure to admire the effort before making any corrections and then commend the action again. By choosing to be easily in awe, you can have a positive impact on your students and can help change their lives for the better.