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“Teachers have a knack of identifying the shy and reluctant ones based on the experience they have gained over the years. We use our power of persuasion to let students come out of their inhibitions and make them individuals who can interact with people and build socialising skills,” says Asha Sharath, an English teacher. Apart from this, the activities help in developing various soft skills such as interpersonal skills, verbal and non-verbal communication skills, team-building skills and so on. It helps one understand problem-based learning. Ice-breaking sessions are designed to help students relax, get to know one another and also to energise them. In addition, they help students form random and informal groups to break up cliques in a fun and informative way.
Mostly, while entering the college campus on their first day, students either have too many preconceived notions or none at all. The process of making them feel at home varies from institution to institution as per their requirements. Colleges such as Women’s Christian College, Loyola College and Stella Mary’s College, take their students on a campus tour to familiarise them with the campus and its surroundings. Such measures can help in breaking students’ inhibitions and make them feel more connected to their study place. Also, in this process, they get to interact with fellow students, seniors and professors and learn about how things work around the college. Another interesting activity is ‘Mapping It’, where a big map of the city is given to each student and they are asked to mark their address and name on it. For those who are not from the city, some space is left beyond the border of the map. After this is done, each student can say a few words about their place. This not only encourages them to interact, but also helps them to know about various new places and their unique features.