There are many different roles to choose from if you have decided to pursue a career in education. Whether you have decided that teaching is an ideal career for you after having your own children and realizing how much you enjoy teaching them new things, want a career with ideal working hours for those who have families, are considering home-schooling your children, and want qualifications to help you succeed, or want to help adults get on the right career path in life, teachers are in high demand wherever you go, and we are always going to need them.
To do their jobs successfully and have a positive impact on the students that they work with, teachers need to possess a certain set of skills and qualities. The best teachers are those who are always looking for new ways to develop their skills and get better at what they do. Whether you are just at the beginning of your teaching career or are currently a teacher who is looking for ways to improve, developing the following skills will help you get the most out of your career position and help drive your students towards success due to the positive impact that you will have on them. If you want to become a more effective educator and get more pride and reward from the work that you do, it’s wise to invest your time, effort, and energy into developing the following qualities and skills.
First things first; teaching would not be possible if people did not know how to communicate with one another. The whole idea of teaching involves communicating information from one person to another, so it makes sense that the most effective educators tend to be those who have invested and continue to invest a lot of energy into perfecting their communication skills. As a teacher, it’s likely that you will be communicating information to your students in a wide range of different ways. From verbal communication to written communication and everything in between, spending time reflecting on how well you communicate and figuring out different ways to communicate more effectively is crucial.
The best teachers know that not everybody communicates the same. Being able to adapt your communication style depending on who you are communicating with at the time is a highly sought-after strength in the education world. Understanding that some students might need more in-depth explanations than others and being able to quickly determine when you may need to try a different way of communicating to be more effective, will help set you apart as a teacher who inspires success. Communication skills are a key part of getting your teaching degree and in advanced programs such as the online EdD from Marymount University, but it’s always worth investing your personal time in improving this skill, too. You can do it with family, friends, work colleagues, and even strangers.
Passion and Enthusiasm:
Have you ever had a teacher who was clearly passionate about what they do? If so, then you will probably agree that there is something different about these teachers. Their sheer love and enthusiasm for the subject that they are teaching can spark your interest in it, even if it wasn’t a subject that you paid particular attention to before. Teachers who are seriously invested in the subject that they teach and have a passion for it that shines through in every lesson tend to be the ones who get their students invested in it too.
Faking enthusiasm is one of the hardest things to do – it’s simply impossible to come across in the same way when secretly, you’re not particularly interested in something. That’s why at the beginning of your journey into a career in teaching, choosing a subject to teach that you are passionate about is crucial. While there are always going to be subjects that will do better in terms of demand for teachers and job security, the truth is that picking a subject just because it might lead to more job offers isn’t going to get you through the reality of your career. On the other hand, when you choose to teach a subject that you love, it’s hardly going to feel like a job.
Patience is a key quality that any good teacher must possess and work hard to develop. Teaching can be a frustrating career at times, especially if you are dealing with students who are simply not interested in the subject that you are teaching but need to learn it because they are in school. You’ll also quickly learn that everybody is different when it comes to learning, and some students are going to be much faster to pick up new things compared to others.
A teacher who does not have a lot of patience is not going to get very far in this career, especially if you want to teach in schools. It’s important to accept that there are going to be times where you might find yourself repeating the same things to students who are struggling to understand. Once again, good communication skills combined with a healthy dose of patience are going to be necessary to get you through these situations and help you help a student understand something without frustrating the both of you.
The ability to see things from another’s point of view and put yourself in their shoes is key to success as a teacher. No matter how easy it might have been for you to learn something, your students are not always going to be the same way. The ability to understand how a student might be feeling right now if you’re teaching them something that they are struggling to get is so important for teachers to have. Without empathy, teachers can easily ruin not only relationships with their students, but it could even lead to a student losing interest in a subject and directly impacting their self-esteem.
As a school teacher, you are also going to be one of the most important people in the students’ young lives, second to their relatives and friends. Because of this, teachers are often the first people to know when students have personal problems that might be affecting them at school or in their daily life. You will need empathy when students come to you with an issue that they might be having trouble with. Understanding how the student is feeling and what can be done to help them right now is key to guiding them in the right direction.
As a teacher, you will need to be highly ethical with everything that you do. Teachers of all kinds will need to follow a code of ethics when dealing with students. Integrity is a key quality that all good teachers have; it is the act of always doing the right thing, even when nobody is watching.
As a teacher, you might sometimes find yourself in a situation where you will need to behave ethically. It’s not uncommon for young students to sometimes develop crushes on their teachers and being able to respond in a professional and ethical way is crucial. In addition, as a key part of your students’ lives, you will also be a mandated reporter, and behaving in an ethical way whenever you have concerns about a student will be expected of you.
The best teachers are those who are confident in their knowledge and abilities, but not cocky about it. Having confidence in yourself is key to inspiring your students to not only put their confidence and trust in you as their teacher but also in themselves. Teachers who do not have a lot of self-confidence are often quite obvious, no matter how much they might try to mask this in front of students. As a result, students may not take you as seriously as they should.
Teaching is a job where you need to have the confidence to stand up in front of a classroom and deliver the right information. You need to be confident in yourself enough to admit when you don’t know something but be sure that you will be able to find out. If your confidence has been lacking but you still want to get into teaching, there are several things that you can do to help you develop more of it. For example, finding opportunities to do some public speaking on your chosen subject could help you prepare for a classroom setting. Spend your spare time trying out new things and pushing yourself to do things that you have been putting off due to a lack of confidence.
The job of a teacher often involves coming up with new ways to teach a class. Trying new things is often the best way to find out how different students learn most effectively and is often necessary for keeping your classes exciting and holding onto the interest of your students. Throughout this career, there will often be times where you’ll need to come up with new and different things to engage your students are engaged with whatever you are teaching.
No matter what or who you are teaching, students often tend to learn better when they are taking part in something interesting and fun. As a teacher, it’s your job to take a creative approach to the work that you do and figure out which different and enjoyable ways are going to get your students more involved, engaged, and taking the subject matter in. Lessons that are boring and feel the same every time are often the worst type, and your students are likely to lose interest quickly when it feels like the class is just going through the motions. There are plenty of things that you can do to get more in touch with your creative side, including spending more time investing in a creative hobby like drama, crafting, art, or cooking. Start to try and come up with more creative ideas for solutions whenever you run into a problem – even if they don’t work out at first, it’ll get you into the habit of thinking outside of the box.
Organizational skills are another very important one for teachers to have. In this career, you’re not just going to be standing up in front of a class to teach lessons, but you will also have to organize lesson plans, manage your time well and make sure that students’ work is marked and returned on time. Good organizational and time management skills are not only crucial for the effectiveness of your teaching, but also for when it comes to managing your own stress levels and ensuring that you do not become overwhelmed with the job.
The good news is that improving your organizational skills is something that you can easily do as you train to become a teacher. Whether you have decided to study on campus or online, you will need to start managing your time, organizing your studies and workload, and making it all work for you.
Finally, teachers will often deal with much more than simply sharing knowledge and facts. As a teacher, there are always going to be times where you may be faced with conflict, particularly if you want to teach in a school setting, where young children and teenagers are still learning vital social skills and more conflicts are likely to arise as a result. As a teacher, staying calm and being the example for students to look up to and follow is essential in these situations.
When it comes to conflict resolution, teachers need to have good communication skills, patience, and empathy to manage the situation and help students get through disagreements and resolve issues. You’ll need to be ready for students who might test your authority and push your boundaries. Conflict resolution will be included in your teaching education, and you can find more resources online in your spare time to help you further develop these skills.
Whether you’ve always wanted to be a teacher or have recently decided to pursue this career, developing these skills and qualities will help you become a more effective educator who makes an impact.