Humility & Appreciation - Super7

“True humility is not thinking less of yourself; it is thinking of yourself less.”
- C.S. Lewis

Humility enables a better world of selflessness and dignity. A person with humility listens to and accepts others. Humility is staying stable and maintaining power on the inside and not needing to control others on the outside.

Humility is in fact, one of the most powerful and important attributes of growth, both in and out of the ring. Being humble helps to build trust and facilitates learning, which is a key aspect of leadership and personal development.

As the revolutionary Nelson Mandela had once said, “The the first thing is, to be honest with yourself. You can never have an impact on society if you have not changed yourself… Great peacemakers are all people of integrity, of honesty, but humility.”
We all know what humility is – a character trait of being humble and accepting of human limitations. It is all about acceptance of limitations of one’s own knowledge, and the willingness to learn from others. In a classroom, if students develop these moral values,  they become better learners as they are always curious to ask questions and seek further explanations. The students will always accept their mistakes and learn from them. Those who are intellectually humble will have no problem in accepting that they are wrong. The value of intellectual humility is best seen if the students in the class work as a team. It enables them to listen to different points of view and respect other’s expertise and knowledge.

Socrates rightly said - "True knowledge exists in knowing that you know nothing". If one enquires deeply, one will find a lot of knowledge and depth about the subject. Students have to understand the purpose of education, put knowledge to practice and experience new things. When we have intellectual humility, we recognise new ideas that can be improved by sharing and collaborating with others. 

When you are in a classroom, you should realise there is often much to gain by listening to other's ideas around you and this humility will never let you stop learning.

We also need humility for inner well-being. Becoming frustrated and angry at failures comes with any struggle in life. It’s important we understand humility to be able to better navigate those struggles and pick ourselves up after the falls. It might sound counter-intuitive, but the more humble you are the more resilient you can be. If you can admit and recognize your part in the downfall you can work towards changing it. If you combine humility with your passion in life, you’ll rise to the top and overcome failure.

For teachers, learning from your students is just as significant as teaching them. Students of all ages have their own unique perspective on the world and can teach you a lot about yourself and about life in general. Other times, students may go out of their way to be respectful and active participants in your classroom. Regardless, there are many times when a teacher wants to show his or her students how much he or she appreciates them. This show of appreciation can go a long way in terms of creating an academic community and building self-esteem in your pupils.

While teachers must always be aware of maintaining boundaries between themselves and their students, taking the time to know our students individually show them that we value them. Knowing more about their personal goals and hobbies can also be a way to motivate your students in the classroom through tailoring lessons to their interests.

Learning is not only about nurturing the quality of humility but also accepting the fact that someone can be better than you. This doesn’t mean you are not worthy enough, it just means you have to work harder this time. The quality of humility makes you a humble for sure moreover, it gives you the ability to take the progress of others in a positive way and keeps up with the sportsmanship spirit in you. It enables you to value the work of others and praise them for what they are good at.

During an art class, the teacher had asked everyone to paint a picture of a rainbow. Sachi was the first one to complete her drawing followed by Rudransh. Rudransh is a great painter and has brought many accolades to the school. However, Sachi's painting too was beautifully done. They showed their respective drawings to the teacher and the others. All children began comparing the drawings and took to judging whose was the best. When everyone asked Rudransh for his opinion, he spontaneously replied that Sachi's work was far better than his. Being a humble child he knew that this time Sachi had outshone him and he did not flinch from admitting the truth.

Appreciation is a fundamental human need in both professional and private life. We want to be appreciated for what we are, what we do and what we achieve. We all need to know that we are important in other people’s lives. We all want to be noticed and valued. Appreciation is at the core of all healthy relationships even a teacher-student relationship.

In every classroom too, there is a whole, big range of personalities. You have students who just can’t keep quiet and other students who hesitate to share. There are students whose behaviour always demands your attention, and then some who stay in the background just because they are always so good.

As a teacher, it’s sometimes hard to treat each student as important. And it is important that we remember that every role played is equally valuable. The student who waters the classroom plants is as important as the one who reads a story aloud for the class. When we appreciate each student and the roles they play, we foster a respectful learning environment.

Appreciation is the inspiration that one needs in achieving anything in life, be it the post of a CEO or be it learning how to make proper round tortillas. Appreciation is the key. Achieving things requires you to have confidence in the idea that you can actually achieve it and appreciation just adds fuel to this car of self-awareness and confidence on its journey to success or even being a better version of yourself.

It was the first day of the new session. The class was full of new faces and each one was brimming with excitement. The teacher too was very enthusiastic. Some of the learners were continuing students of the school while there were a few for whom it was the first day in a new school. 

The teacher asked each child to introduce himself. There was a quaint child named Sheila who appeared to be uneasy. When it was her turn, she almost started trembling out of nervousness. Sensing something was wrong, the teacher tried to do something to distract her. The child had in front of her a rough notebook which was covered with a wonderful piece of art- a stream flowing over rocks and stones with wild greenery all around. Instead of the introduction, the teacher appreciated the artwork. The child's face broke into a smile as she informed that it was she who had painted it. The teacher warmly welcomed the painter to the class. She later learnt that Sheila suffered from the fear of public speaking. She is now a grown-up girl who never forgets to thank her teacher whenever they meet for boosting her morale on that day. As teachers, we must never be miserly while appreciating our students. A few words of encouragement can make the day for them.

Hence, humility and appreciation are two aspects of the same coin. Humility is the humbleness that you have while learning new things from others and appreciation is praising them for having that knowledge which turned out to be useful to you too. Inculcating these qualities in the students is of utmost importance. It makes them ready for accepting challenges in life. It teaches them how to take their failures and the success of others in a sporting way. The students are required to know these qualities for not only academic basis but also as values for living a generous and happy life.

Super 7 @ Billabong High International School, Thane
- Sayantani Mukherjee, Dimple Awasthi, Ritu Chitnis, Manjusha Saji, Jyoti Ramdhave, Vijayalaxmi Ramesh & Sumati Muthukumar

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