How to be a great teacher- part 2

I had written an post previously about what makes an educator stand out that had nothing to do with their training or degrees- ( That post was the tip of the iceberg when it comes to intrinsic attributes that make a teacher relatable and an inspiration to his or her pupils. Let’s resume our discovery of what constitutes a fantastic teacher-


Truly listen – it might seem like a no-brainer; however, every teacher should care about what the students have to say. In the rigmarole of daily life, we become entangled with chores that must be accomplished, planners that ought to be forwarded, and a myriad of tasks that inhabit our thoughts. Sometimes this gets in the way of our capacity to truly listen to a child. Children know when they are not being heard, and not acknowledging their opinions or emotions will lead them to suffer the loss of trust in their facilitator and the channels of communication will cease to exist. In DPS International, we put benches in the corridors so that students and educators alike could sit down to connect, sort out issues or merely vent about their day. We found it being used frequently, and the children enjoyed having a safe place that they could use to spend time with their friends or even sort out issues with adversaries.

The Friendship Bench

Set the bar high – Students come from all forms of families that may stretch from encouraging to indifferent. These youngsters bring all that baggage into the classroom, and they want to know that they can attain all that they strive for in life. As a facilitator, you grow to be their second parent and should give them goals to aspire to as well as instruct them in techniques to ensure that dream is attainable. Goal setting should be supported by reality and a staunch belief that hard work will get them there. If students see the teacher working hard and being passionate about their job, they will recognize the work ethic expected to be successful. Educators teach to build global citizens of tomorrow. It is necessary to consider that aspect and walk into your classroom as an exemplar of what you want to see in the next generation.


Upskill yourself as often as possible – I have always asserted that teaching never ends as I move out in the teaching space. My psyche is continually buzzing with visions of activities that I could organize the next day, a unique technology tool that could make an activity more stimulating, and strategies on how I can bring my most reclusive student into the fray. I have learned that the best way to do this is to engage in significant professional development as often as possible, whether online or through workshops. It is human nature to want to switch off once we clock out, but in my opinion, educators do not work for a school, they work for the students that they must teach the next day. Ensuring that you are at the top of your game will directly result in the growth of your learners. If you would like to know more about online courses through Coursera, check out my blog post –

Collaboration is key – Collaboration is the backbone of the International Baccalaureate and students experience enormous growth when they work as a team. The same is true for teachers. Make certain that you have an open door for your colleagues who may be struggling, and do not hesitate to make contact with your neighbour if you need a listening ear. Bounce ideas off each other, sound them out and seek feedback on how viable your proposals are. Collaboration permits you to enhance your ideas, share what you already know while learning from experts in their field. It is impossible to be an specialist at everything, so give yourself a break and get in touch with your peers when you need help.

Collaborating over coffee

Switch gears often – Be flexible when it comes to lesson plans and always have a backup. I am a big believer in Murphy’s Law – whatever can go wrong, will. I am not a pessimist but pride myself on not leaving much margin for error. Technical glitches happen, students go through downswings and lose focus, and a fabulous activity could turn out to be a complete flop. It is prudent to read the room and see whether the task that you have set before the students is being carried out effectively or whether they are straining. Reflecting on one’s practices as a teacher is essential to gain knowledge on how you need to improve to get your students to reach the goal. It is always nice to have a few games prepared to perk up your class in case you sense a lull in the lesson.

Math twister- a break from the monotony of class

I hope that these suggestions have aided you to reflect on your practices as an educator. Are there any other traits that you feel make a wonderful teacher? Let me know in the comments below.


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