What Makes a Good Teacher?

Teachers are one of the pillars of a good education. While every teacher is different, today you'll discover more about the main qualities that all good teachers should have.
What Makes a Good Teacher?

Last update: 03 August, 2018

Teaching means much more than just passing on different pieces of knowledge. A good teacher also needs to know how to create the right conditions for learning and help students acquire certain values.

A good educator  should create an environment that makes it easy for students to learn and develop their own ideas about the world around them.

This environment will be part of the foundation of a successful education. To achieve it, education professionals need to possess a wide range of personal and professional abilities. 

In addition to subject knowledge and a passion for their work, teachers need to know how to relate to their students. Each teacher has his or her own style, abilities and qualities.

Today we’ll discuss some of the most important qualities that a good teacher should have.

The professional qualities of a good teacher

“A teacher is a compass that activates the magnets of curiosity, knowledge and wisdom in the pupils” – Ever Garrison

Over the course of a teacher’s studies, he or she will have acquired a great deal of knowledge. This not only refers to theoretical knowledge but practical knowledge as well. However, this isn’t always enough.

Besides proper preparation, teachers need to be willing to continue on with their professional development. In part, this is because subject matter is constantly advancing.

But it’s also because there are always new techniques and technological advances that apply to education. A good educator needs to learn just as much as his or her students – if not more.

What Makes a Good Teacher?

A teacher’s investigative capacity is also an important factor. In other words, a teacher needs to make a personal effort to discover how to make classes more dynamic and interesting. 

During these classes, the teacher must also carefully observe the students in order to know how to orient them and also how to evaluate them – not just to establish grades, but also to identify and help solve problems that children may be having at home.

Being a good teacher also requires a high capacity for organization and planning. Keeping track of schedules and classrooms is just one part of it. The other part consists of planning and connecting material and making the transition between subjects less confusing.

What’s more, educators need to keep a pace that’s beneficial for the entire class. This includes students who may have difficulty learning as well as those who are especially gifted.

The personal qualities of a good teacher

Having good qualifications and professional preparation is only one part of being a good teacher. Teachers also need to have a certain personal profile. Every person is unique, of course, and that doesn’t mean one person is better than another. However, there are certain traits that help educators relate better to their students.

“A good teacher can inspire hope, ignite the imagination and instill a love of learning”

–Brad Henry–

10 characteristics of a good teacher

  • Cordiality and closeness. Teachers should communicate with students in a way that makes them feel comfortable to ask questions or for advice. During class, teachers and students need to have comfortable, relaxed communication.
  • Authority. This same cordiality needs to be kept in balance with a certain level of composure. There needs to be respect in the classroom and the teacher needs to be a point of reference.
  • Skilled communication. It’s not enough for a teacher to impart knowledge to his or her students. Teachers must also be able to communicate with other teachers and with parents. Good communication is a fundamental part of being a teacher.
  • Vocation. If a teacher is passionate about teaching, he or she will give 100%. A good educator will take on daily challenges and always give his or her all to the students.
  • Patience. Every child’s needs are different. Therefore, a teacher must be able to open and able to adapt willingly to these needs. That way, he or she will provide firm and constant support to each student.
  • Humility. Besides cultivating mutual respect, teachers need to maintain a healthy level of humility. Like all other human beings, teachers can make mistakes. Admitting this to students will help them gain their trust – and it will boost their student’s self-confidence.
What Makes a Good Teacher?
  • Creativity. This is fundamental when it comes to making information interesting and also in problem solving. Whether it be making class time enjoyable or explaining a concept that’s particularly difficult, a good teacher needs to be creative.
  • Self-confidence. When it comes to carrying out their job, teachers need to show their self-confidence. This will inspire calm and confidence in the children.
  • Dedication to hard work. We need to get rid of the myth that being a teacher is an easy job. It’s a profession that requires a great deal of work, both at school and after hours. A good teacher always looks for ways to improve classes and help his or her students. This requires a great deal of time and effort.
  • Responsibility. Being responsible is important in any career and any area of life. But when it comes to being a teacher, this discipline is even more important. Let’s not forget that parents entrust teachers with their children during a large part of the day.

Good teachers are those that students never forget, no matter how many years go by. Teachings leave a mark in us and shape us into the people we become.

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This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.