10 Essential Skills for Today’s Teachers
- Feb 09, 2015
Teachers, I have a question for you. And, I expect a frank reply from you guys. When was the last time your students paid attention during your Physics class? Or enjoyed an entire Math period without yawning even for one? Or, followed everything you as you explained them lessons inside the classroom? Can you remember it?
Did you know that an excellent teacher can motivate even the weakest student? Well, yes students, it is true. It is possible to come out with flying colors in exams only if you’re fortunate enough to be blessed with a great teacher. It is also possible to crack the toughest Calculus problems, if your Math teacher is patient. Patient enough to explain each and every step, every concept of those sums until you finally grasp it.
However, modern teachers must be qualified with additional skills, apart from patience and experience. One of them is to successfully employ social media in the classroom and innovate the process of learning. In other words, ideal teachers must strive to make learning more interactive for all kinds of leaners.
Let us explore the ten essential skills for today’s teachers, in the following paragraphs:
- Understand modern technology: Today, digital media plays an immense role in education, with several educational institutions adopting information technology in their classroom sessions. As teachers, you must get a grip of how this technology can be merged with academics. The aim is to simply the flow of knowledge and information, from teachers to the students. For instance, you must be capable of employing Twitter, Facebook and other social networking sites while teaching your pupils.
- Control your online reputation: Do you possess an updated LinkedIn profile, with all your educational and occupational qualifications and accolades? Furthermore, are you sure the information you have provided in your LinkedIn account is accurate? If your answer is yes, you’re a ‘digitally literate’ person with a decent online reputation. You might not realize it, but such a reputation adds weightage to your CV. Not only that, it even establishes your credibility and goodwill.
- Be flexible with students: Each student differs from the other in terms of learning and understanding abilities, receptive skills and attention spans. Some might be exceptionally bright. Few others might require more attention. So, be adaptable while you teach. Identify the strengths and weaknesses of your students and teach accordingly. A smart tip for teachers” go slow and explain every concept associated to your topic. This way you can get more students to listen to you
- Find attractive study resources: As kids are restless, studies tend to become dull to them after a point of time. How to make lessons more interesting to students? Let me tell you. Subscribe to some RSS Readers who are well versed in modern educational theories. You can even surf the Internet to learn more about education technology. For example, the ‘Edudemic’ is a resourceful website that can help you make your lessons more engaging.
- Start a blog: How about starting a blog that speaks about your lesson plans or the subjects you teach? Blogging is a wonderful way to let the world know about you and promote your teaching skills. You can start by uploading some shots of yourself teaching your students in a classroom, on Tumblr. You can also post your ideas about education or teaching on WordPress, and add some inspirational quotations based on education.
- Know how to communicate: Good communication between teachers and students is the key to developing intelligent learners. I know teachers spend their entire day talking continuously, explaining ideas and clarifying queries if their students. Some teachers fail to communicate effectively, after a long day. However, you have no choice but to sound clear as you present your lessons in the classroom. Or else, pupils would fail to comprehend whatever is being taught to them.
- Develop your learning network: Gaining knowledge is a lifelong experience. So, there is no end to learning something new. And as teachers, it your responsibility to keep track of the latest education technology and academic resources. Try connecting to educationists, professors, lecturers and teachers from every corner of the world. You have the Internet at your service, to aid you in doing so. Update your Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn profiles, add up fellow teachers and join important communities or groups related to education.
- Keep on learning: I was just speaking about how learning is an eternal experience. It is true. Even if you are a teacher, you can never really put a full stop to learning. Because, every day, education technology is undergoing transformation and is getting modified. So attend as many educational workshops, lectures and seminars as you can. And make it your food for thought. It would go a long way in making you a better teacher.
- Work in a team: When I was a school-kid, I remember how my teacher used to divide us into teams, when we had to deliver any project. And, we had to coordinate amongst ourselves to produce a good one. That’s the importance of team-work. When teachers work in a team, they can be assured of improved academic outcome. For instance, you can arrange for extra classes, where another Math teacher explains a few topics to students. This enables all students to learn better and even makes classes interesting.
- Learn how to detach: Yes, dear teachers. Just like you must be aware of how to engage your students, you should also know how to detach yourself after sometime. In other words, learn how to disconnect from your lessons, after you finish explaining a chapter. When you are done teaching a particular concept, give students time to understand it. And, approach you with their problems during your next class. Never make a goal of teaching everything in a single day.
I hope these tips for the modern teacher motivates you to make attempts in making your lessons livelier from today onwards. Just remember, modern technology is your friend. It is here to help you teach, learn and guide. And this goes for teachers as well as students.
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