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What does it take to be a good teacher?

 
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creativemark



Joined: 08 Jan 2010
Posts: 9
Location: Canada

PostPosted: Fri Jan 22, 2010 1:15 am    Post subject: What does it take to be a good teacher? Reply with quote

Please read and respond on what you think it takes to be a good teacher.

From my experiences and from what I have read I have narrowed down what it takes to be a good teacher to 4 things: adaptability, good rapport, professionalism, and mastery of your subject matter.

Adaptability is important because no class is the same. A class may have a variety of levels or a variety of learning styles. Knowing exactly where students are having difficulty will help students improve faster and creating activities that make students move around (if they have a more physical learning style) facilitates learning. It increases the amount of learning, and none of the students get left behind or become bored.

Good rapport is essential. Several years ago, a young teacher came back from Taiwan and I asked for advice. The only advice she gave was to have good rapport with your students. If you know them and respect them, they are more likely to listen to you directions.

Professionalism is also very important. This includes being punctual, and always prepared. If students see you example of what the standards are, they will more likely show up on time and finish homework. They will also simply respect you as a teacher.

Lastly, you need to know you subject matter thoroughly. Mastery of your subject matter enables you to answer questions and provide a model for what is being learned. Also, I think you need to eventually master how to explain your material in a step by step manner. If you don't know the answer to a question, students will still be pleased if you promptly return with an answer after the break or the next day.
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dave-b



Joined: 19 Dec 2009
Posts: 14

PostPosted: Wed Feb 03, 2010 3:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just asked a potential teacher this question in an interview today.

His answer was something I didn't expect, but that I believe is very true.

A good ESL teacher needs to have NO EGO. How true! When I see a teacher fail it is because they always want to make their point, always want to be right. A strong ego is the fastest way to increase teacher talk time.

He said a few other things, but this was the most notable.

What do you think creativemark? Agree, disagree?
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creativemark



Joined: 08 Jan 2010
Posts: 9
Location: Canada

PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2010 3:11 am    Post subject: characteristics of teachers Reply with quote

Hi Dave-b.

I really think that is insightful. I would have to agree. Confidence is good, but you need to listen to the students too. Or let them talk with each other.

I guess if your EGO is too big, you won't pay attention to what students are struggling with.

I am finding with my tutoring, that I need to pay attention to what it is that I am doing that is working and not working. I think a small EGO can help.
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dave-b



Joined: 19 Dec 2009
Posts: 14

PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2010 3:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

One example I thought of was when an ESL teacher speaks another language.

A mistake due to a big ego is to speak in the student's language because you are proud of your skills.

I know I have had to resist this temptation in the past. You really need to check your ego and just say you don't understand, because showing off your Japanese, or Spanish, or whatever it is, surely doesn't help the student.
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Macavity



Joined: 01 Sep 2005
Posts: 151

PostPosted: Fri Feb 12, 2010 8:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

For me, speaking in the students' own language has less to do with ego and more to do with the efficacy of lessons.

Teacher talking time is important because students need to hear the target language spoken in an authentic manner. It also gives them a breather. Again, not really about egos.

The most important thing that a teacher needs is patience. Lots and lots of good, old fashioned patience!
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