As an educator, I strive to challenge students, pulling them out of their comfort zone, while simultaneously letting them know that I value consistent attention to coursework and that I always find ways to reward those who demonstrate significant effort. If a student begins to feel overwhelmed or disoriented, it is always my advice to stay calm, don't quit, and come talk to me. My approach is to convey a sense of openness and demonstrate that I am sensitive to their concerns and dedicated to their success. I work to encourage a strong rapport with students to keep them attentive and productive.
I often reference Corita Kent's and John Cage's 10 Rules for Teachers and Students. "Rule 9 - Be happy whenever you can manage it. Enjoy yourself. It is lighter than you think." Or, "Rule 7 - THE ONLY RULE IS WORK. If you work it will lead to something. It is the people who do all the work all the time who eventually catch onto things."
In sum, I do my best to guide students towards discovering their own voice and a critical eye, empowering them to craft meaningful messages that are ethical, integral and intriguing.