People often describe teaching as a profession. However, it’s more of a vocation and an art form. Why? Because it isn’t something you can learn – not in the traditional sense, anyway. Instead, it’s more of a habit you grow into over time. Teacher training barely prepares you at all. So what makes a great teacher? It’s a good question.
Somebody Who Is Approachable
Kids want to feel like they can approach teachers and ask them for help. Unfortunately, growing up, many of us didn’t have this experience. Instead, we felt awkward or even in danger whenever we approached the teacher. A great teacher deserves a great gift.
Being approachable involves creating psychological safety. Students must feel like they can come forward with work that’s challenging them and ask for help.
Somebody Who Loves Learning
When the teacher loves learning, it is easier for the students to follow in their footsteps. Students always appreciate passionate teachers because they make every lesson interesting. Passion is also infectious. It is hard for students to not get excited by a subject when the teacher clearly loves it.
Somebody Who Can Lead
Teachers also need to be leaders for their students. In a way, learning is a team effort. Students need to put in the work, but teachers must also guide them along the right path. Leadership is about setting the appropriate level of difficulty for students and ensuring that they are keeping pace.
Somebody Who Is Open To New Teaching Methods
While lecturing to students from the front of the class is the traditional way of teaching, great teachers are always open to new methods. They understand that there isn’t necessarily one perfect way of doing things.
Using an online story book creator for students, working on the computer or even taking a lesson outside can all help the learning process. Students typically progress faster when they experience a broad array of learning options.
Somebody Who Respects Students
Teachers need to tread a fine line between discipline and respect. Discipline is about restoring order to the classroom, while respect is about treating each student in the right way. Great teachers always find a way to walk this tightrope, never allowing the need for discipline to compromise the respect they show their students.
Somebody Who Creates A Sense Of Community
Students need to feel like they belong to something larger than themselves. The school experience shouldn’t be entirely about examinations at the end of the year. Instead, it needs to be something worthwhile in itself.
Great teachers understand that life is not a journey, nor is it a series of stepping stones to higher levels of achievement. Instead, they view it as something that can be great in the here and now. Students should be able to look back on their memories of learning with fondness in the future. A teacher will know when they get this right when they receive cards or gifts from their students, Midam Caps writes about this in more detail.
Somebody Who Is Always Professional
Lastly, great teachers never allow their professional standards to slip. They maintain their professionalism in all areas, always. The best teachers set an example to their colleagues on how they should behave and deal with students.