Tell us about yourself!
My name is Esha Patnaik. My professional background spans Psychotherapy and academia. I am a psychotherapist by training, with specialisation in Narrative Psychotherapy. In academia I have taught and assisted in undergraduate and graduate courses in Business Communications and Organisational Psychology, high school courses in General Psychology and conducted training sessions in counselling skills. I have been teaching HL and SL Psychology courses with Pamoja since 2012.
Why did you decide to become a teacher?
My mother was an academic so I have grown up in an environment of books, curriculum planning and stories from her classrooms. When I started college I was quite keen on mental healthcare so there was no deliberate planning to enter the teaching profession, until a teaching assistant position came my way. Having specialised in Psychology, it seemed natural to expand my field of work and be more involved not just in praxis but also the teaching of the subject.
How do you think your professional experience has affected your teaching of Psychology HL?
I have always been interested in Abnormal and Social Psychology, which also explains my work in psychotherapy and choice of subjects for teaching. Having these topics so central to the IB Psychology curriculum has been a pleasant match of interests. I think this experience benefits my students as I am able to bring in my professional experiences and skills from these related areas and share them with students to make the subject more meaningful and relatable.
What tips would you give to students in the midst of their exams?
Maintain a regular daily schedule. Have healthy meals. Sleep for a reasonable number of hours each night, since it will actually help you consolidate and remember better what you have learned.
During exams, as with other areas of life, every time your mind wanders to what is not in your control – the grades you will receive, whether or not a university will select your application – bring it back to focus on what you can control: managing your time, preparing for exams, taking care of yourself. Then do something about it.
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