What is an Effective Teacher?
The effective teacher possesses a body of knowledge and skills needed to promote student achievement. This teacher
has a thorough understanding of his or her content area and is forever learning more and more about that subject in order
to stay abreast of the current experiments, studies, and findings related to it.
The effective teacher is not only knowledgeable about his or her specific subject area, but this teacher has a liberal
arts education. He or she is well rounded and has a general knowledge of several areas. For example, in order for this teacher
to be able to use literature-based units across the curriculum, he or she must contain some general knowledge of several other
subject areas. In doing so, this teacher will be able to effectively incorporate literature in science, social studies, mathematics,
history, and a plethora of other subjects.
Additionally, this teacher can effectively impart the skills that he or she has into the minds of his or her students.
The effective teacher is successful at teaching in a manner that all students clearly understand. This teacher acquires the
social and communication skills needed to get his or her message across to the students.
Moreover, the effective teacher has developed strong rapport with his or her students. This relationship with the students
offers several advantages. The students will show less anxiety of the subject and become more willing to learn about it because
they have a teacher whom they know will patiently explain the concept to them. As a result, there will be fewer disciplinary
problems among the students because they will be less likely to disobey or disrespect someone who they know care about them.
The effective teacher also has teaching styles that stimulate student motivation. This teacher understands that he
or she must gain the students’ attention before attempting to teach them and does so by incorporating interesting lessons
into the curriculum. This teacher also understands that every student is different and learns in their own unique way. He
or she is willing to learn each student’s specific learning style and modify his or her teaching style to fit these
many different ways of learning.
This teacher knows how to enhance student achievement and develop higher-level thinking skills among students by asking
them higher-order questions. For example, instead of asking a question from Bloom’s lowest level of thinking which causes
the students to retain facts, the effective teacher will ask a question from the highest level which would require the students
to judge the merit of and idea.
In addition, the effective teacher is familiar with the standards in his or her field of study along with the general
standards that every teacher should know. Not only is he or she familiar with them, but he or she incorporates them into teaching.
For example, every effective teacher should know the Interstate New Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium Standards (INTASC),
but the special education teacher should know both the INTASC Standards and the Special Education Standards. This teacher
is careful to incorporate all these standards into his or her lesson plans.
Furthermore, the effective teacher enhances professional development by attending workshops and having strong relationships
with colleagues. The effective teacher knows that he or she can learn a great deal from more experienced educators and doesn’t
hesitate to ask them questions. This teacher makes it his or her priority to attend workshops that assist in the enhancement
of his or her professional development.