WHAT MAKES A GREAT TEACHER

WHAT MAKES A GREAT TEACHER

Top priority for most parents in the world is giving their children the best education they desire if they can afford it especially the private ones. Aside the good learning environment and the curriculum, one of the things parents consider before they enrolled their children in a school is the quality of the teachers therein.

They are more comfortable getting their children inside the classroom of an effective teacher. Now, what makes a teacher great?

Some parents even go to the extent of requesting specific teachers for their children while others spend quality time, observing classrooms where they could get a feel for how teachers actually work with children in a school they do not have control over.

Whatever impressions they got or observations made automatically form the basis of their decisions about the school.

Now, what makes a teacher great or how can parents identify great teachers with superb teaching? Clearly, great teachers begin by loving children. A teacher that does not love the students obviously cannot deliver quality lecture to them.

Beyond that, having active intellectual lives outside the classroom is another quality of a good teacher. Teacher with large vocabularies are better at their jobs because this trait is associated with being intelligent, well-read and curious. The best teachers often love to travel, have fascinating hobbies or speak passionately about their favorite philosopher or poet.

Great teachers believe intelligence is achievable and not inborn. Effective educators reject the idea that smarts are something that only some students have; they expect all children to perform at high levels, even those who are unruly, learning disabled or struggling with English and other arithmetical subjects. Conversely, lame teachers spend more too much time, reviewing basic facts and too little time introducing deeper concepts.

Effective teachers are data-driven and assess students at the beginning of new units to identify their strengths and weaknesses, then, quiz students again when the terms end to determine whether the students assimilate the concepts and skills taught.

Research from the cognitive psychologists Andrew Butler and Henry Roediger confirms that students score higher on end-of-year exams when they have been quizzed by their teacher along the way.

According to the scholar John Hattie, when teachers ask questions or focus lessons on concepts that are broader than those on multiple-choice tests, children’s scores on higher-level assessments—like those that require writing—increase.

How can you identify a high-quality question in your child’s schoolwork? It tests for conceptual, not factual understanding like “When did the Great Depression occur?” but “What economic, social and political factors led to the Great Depression”?

COMPILED BY: JOY NWATEH-LEONARD

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