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Saturday, March 04, 2017

What Makes a Great Teacher?

What makes a great teacher? I was prompted to think about this today, and of course, I'm interested in this question as I'd like to continually move in this direction.

I believe a great teacher does the following:
  • Establishes strong, respectful and caring relationships with all students. 
  • Leads meaningful, relevant, and engaging learning experiences
  • Works collaboratively with colleagues, parents, students, administrators, other staff members and citizens to promote positive, successful programs and communities for students.
  • Demonstrates measured, kind, thoughtful, and respectful demeanor. 
  • Is enthusiastic, invested, and hard working when it comes to teaching. 
  • A lifelong learner who continually develops his/her intellect, knowledge, and skill. 
  • Creates a warm, vibrant, and responsive learning environment.
  • Is an expert in the knowledge area he/she is responsible for.
  • Works creatively with modern and traditional tools, resources, and materials to promote optimal learning.
  • A culturally proficient, empathetic, and compassionate educator.
  • Uses analysis based on observation, study, research, data, and other sources to make informed decisions about teaching and learning. 
As I think of this list and my aim to continue to move in this direction, the following actions come to mind:
  • Reset the classroom environment--clean it up, organize, and renovate to make it more welcoming and helpful with regard to student learning.
  • Continue to reach for greater cultural proficiency.
  • Slow down in order to include greater empathy, response, and care.
  • Prioritize in order to make sure the most important learning happens in positive ways. 
  • Look for ways to listen to and respond to parents more with regard to their child's learning needs and interests as well as ways I can support parents with regard to their child's school experience. 
What do you think makes a great teacher? What would you add to this list? I'm curious.