The school life is sure to be influenced by the emotional attitudes of pupils either positively or negatively. So side by side with the recognition of individual differences, a teacher must be aware of the emotional aspects of the child’s life.
A child’s emotional life is just as important as his intellectual or physical life. Unfortunately, parents and teachers have been relatively slow to accept this. Most of the people responsible for the growth of children are still ignorant of this vital factor.
The importance of the emotional life of the child in his education has been duly recognized by certain groups of modern educators. Its evidence comes from four principal sources.
Firstly, we find it from the Progressive Schools. They attach due importance to the emotional life of children and are against giving any kind of harmful school punishment of the older type. These schools produce pupils whose adjustment and happiness are distinctly marked.
Secondly, we find it from schools which through arts, handicrafts, drama, music, etc., give full scope to pupils for free emotional expressions. Consequently, the pupils acquire emotional, mental and motor control with corresponding social poise.
Thirdly, we find it from schools where the needs of the pupils are always given the first importance. The teacher-pupil relationship is based on the understanding of these needs. Everywhere in the school, there is a natural sympathetic attitude towards capabilities and difficulties.
Fourthly, in the fields of backwardness, juvenile delinquency, and maladjustment several valuable investigations have been made. These investigations acquaint us with the deep and potent influence which negative emotional states exert-as evidenced in progress, cure and readjustment.
Studies of children and adolescents and various kinds of researches in this connection betray the intimate relation between the intellectual, physical and emotional aspects of life. Today we are aware that much of the illness, scholastic failure, unhappiness and difficult behaviour in children are the direct outcome of emotional frustration. The teacher cannot foresee all this unless he has a deep psychological understanding.
According to psychological findings, emotional calm is a necessary condition for the proper functioning of intellectual power whether in children or in adults. The sense of success and achievement creates balanced personalities.
It is in the favorable emotional incentives of interest and success that we can concentrate and apply our powers to the best advantage. Even the dullest child tray is immensely benefited by encouragement, praise, individual help and sympathetic consideration of difficulties.
Failure, fear, frustration, harsh criticism, sarcasm, punishment, and unhealthy competition will never create the sense of independence and self-control in children which we must endeavor to promote.
Hence, all the teachers must be trained in the principles of mental hygiene of child and adult. Free psychiatric advice and treatment should be available for all the teachers both in training and actual practice. Hence the knowledge of psychology is very necessary for a teacher.