One Part of Unlocking Student Behavior
Do you wonder why you have to model something so that your students will really get it?
Do you wonder why some of your students just don't seem to understand your sense of urgency, or why you are angry?
Do you wonder why you "feel their pain"? And, vice versa?
Is it always exactly a mirror?
Why? It seems that there is a link between what your action is and what your intent is. Clearly, there is an anticipatory mirroring that when an action occurs, although the intent of the action may vary.
And, what if they're on the autism spectrum?
NO! He probably doesn't. And, yes, there probably is a link problem.
If your student is on the autism spectrum, he probably has no idea why you are so upset, or even that you really are upset. His mirror neurons don't fire the same way that yours do, so he does not even understand that you're upset. His brain does not read your expressions.
Keep this in mind and be empathetic to his needs. Help him to know why you are saying something. HIs mind may process the information in a factual manner, depending where he is on the spectrum.
The Mirror Neurons Tell the Story
It's awesome! It's Mirror Neurons.
Did you ever wonder why your class was a little more subdued when you were having a bad day? How about when you added an extra day of tutoring because you knew that Johnny would stay and you could help him get it? Or, when you put the class on an individual task so that you could go check on him? That's mirror neurons at work. You felt his pain - he has it, but you can feel it, you can understand it. You can empathize with him.
The same way that your students know when you're having a bad day and seem to be trying to give you a little bit of a break. It's happened to me - I'm holding my head in my hands, and they just chill. They don't even ask, they just start checking the Moodle for what's going on in class today. Makes you wonder why they can't do it every day. Don't push your luck:)!
So Why Does It All Matter?
HELLO!!! Study the brain a little more. Check it out... just this one little thing - mirror neurons - explains so much!