For any teacher to be successful, he or she must possess certain skills. It’s not enough to know how to teach; you need to have the right teaching techniques and know-how to interact with your students to make them productive, cooperative learners and successful adults outside of the classroom. 10 skills you need to be a successful teacher.
Learn more about these 10 skills you need to be a successful teacher below.
Good communication skills will help you foster better relationships with your students, parents, and other teachers. Strong communication is key to being an effective teacher, whether managing conflict with students or keeping in touch with colleagues.
According to guidance counselor Christopher Dows at Dallas Independent School District, one-way educators can enhance their communication skills is by serving as mentors for younger teachers and staying abreast of trends and best practices in education.
A great tip I heard once was that there should be two pages of thank-you notes in every teacher’s file. Send them a handwritten note back if they’re taking time out of their busy day to give you positive feedback or acknowledge some work that you did.
- It doesn’t have to be long—just three or four sentences thanking them for their comments and acknowledging what they said.
- It lets people know that you listen and care about what they have to say.
- It also makes those people feel appreciated, which is always a good thing!
This is easily one of the most important traits of successful teachers, particularly when it comes to young students. As children grow and mature, they require more attention and dedication, which every good teacher is willing to offer. Without patience, you’ll lose your cool regularly, making even simple interactions with students (or parents) an overwhelming chore.
Teaching may require long hours, and not every task is flashy or new, but some patience helps remind you of why you wanted to teach in the first place: that your job isn’t just about preparing young minds for college or careers. It’s all about helping students grow as thinkers who can work independently inside and outside the classroom.
3) Leadership Skills
Strong leadership skills are essential for teachers. As they’ll be required to help lead and inspire their students, colleagues, and superiors. To become an effective leader, think about what you’ve learned from your experiences as well as any classes or professional development training you’ve completed.
Are there any common themes or lessons that stand out? Once you’ve identified these qualities, start applying them in your work life. Even if it’s not something that comes naturally, try putting yourself in leadership positions at work.
Make sure you’re always trying to improve your team’s performance by creating new processes or reaching out to colleagues for advice on new policies and curriculum choices.
4) A Sense of Humor
You might think you need to be dour and serious to teach, but your students are still children. It’s OK for them (and you) to laugh once in a while.
Laughter boosts creativity and helps us stay positive even when times get tough. Even more importantly, if your students like you, they’ll be more likely to pay attention and behave well.
You will likely be assigned to teach certain courses or subjects in specific grade levels when you first start. However, if you want to expand your professional growth or move up in your career, you’ll need to be open and willing to change.
Teaching is not just about knowing how to plan and execute lessons. But also involves teaming up with other staff members on projects and getting involved in committees. Being flexible is key to being an effective teacher.
6) Organization and Time Management
Teachers need to be organized, whether it’s lesson plans, grading assignments, or tracking parent contact. It’s no secret that effective time management skills will make you more efficient and more successful in your career, so taking some time each week to evaluate and prioritize tasks is imperative.
Teachers aren’t in it for money or prestige. They do it because they love kids, and that kind of dedication is something worth respecting. As a new teacher, you should keep in mind that you are always part of someone else’s learning experience—not just your own—and be willing to give your best effort even when others don’t deserve it.
Remember: Students learn best when they feel like their teacher cares about them as people and not just academic units. If you want to be successful, think about how you can help students become better people by caring for them—and show gratitude for every chance at teaching that comes your way.
8) Problem Solving/Critical Thinking Skills
Teachers need to solve problems daily. Teachers have their fair share of problems from dealing with behavioral issues in class to working through curriculum and lesson plans. According to Gallup, four out of five employees say they’re not engaged at work.
For students (and teachers) to be intrigued with what’s going on in class and enjoy learning. It requires tasks to be engaging and activities that use their critical thinking skills. For teachers, having these skills allows them to do well and brilliantly in their jobs.
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9) Perseverance and Balance
While it may be true that teaching students are more of an art than a science, there are still certain fundamental skills you’ll need as a teacher. Among them: are perseverance and balance. Teach in any capacity long enough and you will understand why so many teachers talk about being on autopilot.
Teachers are often forced to work without breaks or days off for weeks because of class schedules, grading/assessment deadlines, lesson planning/prep time, professional development hours, and extracurricular duties (to name just a few).
Even with such limited time away from school, balancing life events (familial obligations, medical needs, illnesses) with job demands can be difficult. In fact, according to a recent study by The National Center for Education Statistics, teachers who were married were less likely to leave their jobs during their first five years of teaching than those who were single. If you want your career as a teacher to last longer than five years, you must develop some balance between your personal and professional lives.
10) Passion for the subject matter
There’s no doubt that you need a passion for what you do to succeed as a teacher. Teaching is, after all, one of those fields where it’s easy for teaching burnout (also known as career burnout) to take over if you aren’t truly excited about what you are doing each day.
skills to be a teacher
But beyond just passion for your subject matter, there are other skills necessary for being an effective teacher and motivator. Take these ten tips into consideration so that your students can reap all of your hard work!