This article mostly brainstorms over the top qualities of a good teacher.
Knowledge is power they say but only a strong guide can effectively chart out a path to harness this power as a tool to aid development.
Modern day teaching entails a lot. Though fundamentals always have and will remain the same, monumental additions have been made to the art of teaching in recent decades.
Keeping this in mind the teacher of today requires classic skills like confidence, communication, a caring and sensitive demeanor as well as new and improved skills on the space age technology called the internet, spontaneity and a level of wit that surpasses today’s all knowing generation of students.
All these attributes and a few more will definitely make for a good educator be it at any institutional level. So lets us go through these essential teaching skills in detail.
Confidence is number 1 on the list of qualities of a good teacher. Teaching must be done with conviction as this is the key to capturing the student’s attention.
This will not only garner respect for the teacher but also help the student in grasping as much as possible from the classes. Making eye contact helps.
Next is a well established line of communication. Asking questions is a good way of doing this but one must be careful not to sound too difficult otherwise the student gets scared into silence.
Mutual respect is a very good facilitator of communication. A teacher must respect every student’s opinion no matter how much he disagrees with it or even if he thinks it is buffoonery. His response must be sensitive.
A good teacher is one who ensures the wholesome development of the entire class and this will only happen if he sets achievable goals before them and remains firm on his expectations.
This attitude must be the same for everyone as partiality, a common feature of higher education, destroys collective morale of the students.
A sensible teacher will come down to the student’s level of understanding instead of showing off his acquired knowledge. This helps no one as it lowers the student’s self confidence. Simplification of complex subjects is one difficult feat a teacher must achieve.
Amongst modern methods technology has become the most important tool for teaching and basic qualifications of any teacher today must have this.
From power point presentations to audio-visual exhibitions, all have tremendously aided intellectual development in the student population.
Technology thus goes hand in hand with human teaching skills the internet being the biggest example. Here it is not enough for the teacher to know how to use the internet but he must ensure to the best of his capabilities that the student is using this technology for his general development and not otherwise.
This also spells caution to the teacher as every word spoken by him can now be verified with the click of a button and thus the teacher must ensure that he always remains one step ahead.
To conclude I would like to add an additional attribute of professionalism that in my opinion the ideal teacher must maintain at all times to avoid ego clashes (Yes, it can happen even with a student!).
Today’s students like no one to intrude into their personal space. One who broadly keeps in mind these basic characteristics should ideally make a good teacher.