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The key to teaching

zellwk profile image Zell Liew 🤗 Originally published at zellwk.com ・2 min read

A good teacher has many skills.

They know how to communicate well, They know how to explain things, they know how to tell if students are confused. They also know how to tease questions out of students.

There's a never-ending list of things to get good at if you want to teach well.

But there's just one thing that holds them together. If you get this one thing right, everything follows.

Your posture

A good teacher cares.

They place their students before themselves.

They do everything they can to help their students learn.

That includes:

  1. Listening to their questions patiently.
  2. Explaining things over and over, using a different manner each time, until they get it.
  3. Providing encouragement and hope.
  4. Asking guiding questions so students find answers to their own questions.
  5. Giving exercises
  6. Being strict with homework.
  7. Segmenting lessons so students can digest information.

They put themselves into their students' shoes to be able to do the above.

The teacher's responsibility

A teacher is responsible to help students learn.

If students don't learn, the teacher is at fault.

The question is, do you care enough to do better the next time? It's okay if you can't teach well right now. It's okay if you can't even teach yourself well.

If you care, you'll find a way to improve.

There aren't many good teachers out there

Few people want to teach. They don't teach because they want to help students. They teach because they want to help themselves.

Sometimes they teach because it's their "job" to teach. But teaching is not a profession. It's an attitude.

The question isn't whether you can teach.

You can.

Anyone can.

The real question is: do you care enough to teach?

You can make a big difference if you step out and start teaching. You might not know it now, but you'll see it paying off in 5 years.


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Discussion (3)

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malgosiastp profile image
Malgosia

I completely agree with your point.

The one thing I really hated as student was the feeling that someone made my teacher come here and now he/she is just counting minutes till the end of lessons and even passing his/her frustration on students.

Right now, when my school time is over it does not mean I've stopped learning. The one difference is that I'm looking for teachers on my own, deciding what kind of methods and behavior help me learn and which just make me hate learning.

Recently I met a lot of people online who are not 'teachers' but do better job as teachers, without realizing it :)

Just yesterday I run into one thought which right now is one of the most important rule I value in someone that I can call a teacher:

I believe that there are a lot of people with great knowledge, geniuses who love what they are doing and progress in this area.

But even if you're so great in something, unfortunately that does not make you good teacher. Being a good teacher is completely different thing. It helps a lot if you love what you're doing as you can encourage much easier other people sharing your passion.

And one more thing - you DON'T HAVE TO BE GOOD TEACHER to be really great expert and person - it's not like being teacher is everyone's next step in career.

Being a person who has great passion and knowledge is sometimes enough. You can just find your own way to help people and share your passion, without trying to be a teacher :)

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lukaszkuczynski profile image
lukaszkuczynski

Totally agree: to be a teacher does not necessarily mean you have to be called "a teacher". If you are sharing your knowledge skillfully it is sometimes more than enough. But first you have to passionate on what you do, as you well noticed.

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zellwk profile image
Zell Liew 🤗 Author

Excellent thoughts! Thanks so much for sharing :)