I'm senior year undergraduate, and I have to say I love to teach. I have assumed the role of a TA for multiple courses uptil now, including courses in economics, physics and mathematics. I have had the fortune of leading tutorial sessions for almost all the courses I have TA-ed thus far.
I have the following concern:
I feel as if that students are reluctant to express their concerns to me. I try and keep things as formal as possible. This is not to say that I peg the students down to their chairs (after all, they're my peers!); rather, I try and conduct everything as formally as possible. Prior to every session, I send timely, formally phrased emails reminding the class of the schedule of the sessions; I'll typeset the tutorials on LaTeX and distribute copies in the session. I feel as if the students are at times intimidated of the lengths I'll go to make the experience of attending the sessions both worhwhile and learning intensive. Hence, I feel as if they're at times reluctant to express their concerns (about the pace of the sessions, about my ability to explain a particular concept etc.), even though I repeatedly ask them to let me know if the pace is too fast for them etc.
What can I do to encourage/facilitate more communication between an undergraduate TA and a class of undergraduate students? I'd like the students to be ideally express their concerns to me as if I'm a mentor or a helper, rather than a TA who'll probably downgrade them on the next assignment in case they bad mouth me to my face, for instance (I don't know if this is a valid concern among students in general, but let's consider this hypothetical for one).