The difference between an ordinary teacher and an extraordinary one is in the latter’s ability to impact learners positively, and there are four distinct skills that every great teacher should have.
In students’ eyes, a teacher is that person apart from family who inspires them to achieve greater academic heights. Unfortunately, there’s reason to believe that more teachers are leaving the profession. In the UK, 13% of teachers leave the role within a year on the job, while others say goodbye after three years. While most people feel that the retention problem is due to excess stress and increasing pressure from above, the Agency Central alludes this to a shortage in essential skills, which every good teacher should have. Some of these are discussed below:
With the constantly changing demands of the teaching profession, those who choose this career path must be adaptable. The teaching environment evolves to suit the current times, including students, resources, practices, etc. This profession constantly changes; for example, when the computer became a notable learning tool a few decades ago, it became imperative for teachers to become computer literate to suit the times. Not only that, but they had to teach ICT to the students and always keep at least one step ahead.
A teacher with this skill can maintain relevance by learning to adjust and acclimatise with the evolving territory. Additionally, an adaptable teacher sees the need to change to upgrade personal and professional standards. Nobody knows how teaching will look like in the next three decades but what you can be sure of is that digitisation will be a dominant influence.
- Mindfulness skills
Mindfulness is a transformational skill that deals with a person’s emotional, physical and mental well-being. It is a critical skill you can’t overlook as a teacher because it embraces awareness and attention. This is a fundamental element you’ll find helpful in this profession. If you’re interested in building yourself better, enrol in a mindfulness teacher training course to upgrade these essential skills.
- Communication skills
Communication is the vehicle through which effective teaching can be carried out, and without it, teaching will cease to exist. Being a good communicator as a teacher means you have the necessary skills required to impart knowledge. It also means you have the inherent abilities to steer every teaching session onto the right path. Teaching is an intensely interactive activity that thrives on good communication between the instructor, students, colleagues, parents/carers, the governing body and other professionals, such as educational psychologists and speech and language therapists. Without this crucial skill, the chances of the learning process being affected are high. Furthermore, it is also likely that stakeholders will feel frustrated if they are unable to access the information they require.
- Stress management skills
Admittedly, the teaching profession can be stressful. For this reason, a teacher needs to find ways and means to maintain a cool head for students. Without avenues to offload stress, the chances of sudden emotional outbursts are significantly increased. These adverse reactions can be discouraging and distracting in the learning environment.
However, with stress management skills, a teacher becomes better prepared to handle different stressful situations associated with the profession. Knowing that a positive learning environment begins with you is the first step to building these necessary coping mechanisms.
Teaching is a noble profession that demands you give your very best. Besides, you’re responsible for imparting lasting knowledge to others, which is enough reason to play the part conscientiously. Having said that, no one would blame you for wanting to get out when the pressure becomes too much. Despite the importance of the role, it is easy to feel like public enemy number one with the media siding against us.