Teachers are on the front lines to help students who are struggling with mental health issues, but they often don't have the resources or training to know how to help. One solution? Technology can help teachers identify signs of mental health problems early on and provide them with data about student behavior that could indicate potential mental health issues.
You’re a teacher. You know the drill. You get to school, you teach your classes, and then you go home and try to catch up on all of the things you didn’t get done during the day. But there are other parts of your job that don't always get as much attention — like being a support system for students who are struggling with mental health issues.
As teachers, you can play an important role in helping students deal with these issues. You may be one of their first points of contact when it comes to seeking help or expressing how they're feeling; but how do you know if someone is struggling? And what do you do once that realization has occurred?
Teachers often can play a vital role in identifying signs of mental illness, especially in children. Technology is being used more and more to support this process, with apps designed to screen for depression or anxiety, such as Moodpath, now available on the Google Play Store. The app will take a photo of your face and analyze it to detect any markers associated with depression. It then uses artificial intelligence (AI) technology to interpret those markers and give you feedback based on what you look like when you're happy versus sad or anxious (or angry).
Fortunately, technology can provide teachers with insights about what is going on in their classrooms. For example, video analytics software can measure engagement and attention—two key factors that influence student success. If a teacher notices that one student appears to be disengaged from the lesson, she can talk to him or her about why he is having trouble following along.
There are a number of tools that educators can use to better understand their students' behavior and academic progress. Data collection apps, like Seesaw or ClassDojo, allow teachers to track student progress over time. The platforms also offer insights into how kids are feeling throughout the day through surveys and quizzes, which may help educators identify students who might need extra attention or support.
Technology can help teachers identify mental health issues in their students. If a student is struggling with an issue, the teacher can refer him or her to the school counselor or other resources. Technology also gives educators information about how well their students are doing academically and socially, which helps them better understand what's going on in the classroom.