Thursday, February 16, 2012

How To Spot A Great Teacher

Do you remember your favorite teacher?  Why were they your favorite teacher? I bet learning was fun in class and you never realized you were learning. You looked forward to going to school because you knew you were not going to be bored and that you would feel encouraged when you left school at the end of the day. Of course when you were younger you may not have been able to express your feelings in this way, but your parents could tell that you liked your teacher by how happy you were and how much you learned. Even if your favorite teacher had to scold you they did so in a way that effectively taught you how to do the right thing the next time you were faced with a similar situation.

As a parent I have witnessed both my daughters become enamored with teachers and those teachers all share some of the same qualities. Of course I viewed my favorite teachers differently as a parent then I did as a student. The qualities that come to mind time and again in those top teachers my daughters were fortunate to have are:
  • Organized—they have the classroom ready to go and they themselves are structured and appear prepared for what the day may bring.
  • Good listeners—this always helps form strong genuine bonds with their students.
  • Makes learning fun—they know what motivates students to learn and they know that learning happens in and outside of the classroom.
  • Good communication—with the parents as well as with the students. Teachers who are clear about expectations in the class with both parents and students, and are not afraid to contact parents about any issue good or bad.
  • Break it down—having a teacher who can explain concepts in an understandable fashion is priceless to both a student and parent.
We are nearing the time of year where student teachers are working in classrooms with students. This means they will be graduating in a few short months and then off to their own classrooms. This is such an exciting time for those “soon to be” new teachers. Perhaps you know a student teacher or even a teacher who is still “new” to teaching and you would like to be encouraging and offer support as they begin their new career. Do2Learn has developed a Handbook for New Teachers that is specific for teachers K-5. This handbook is really a great way to show a new teacher how much you care and support them.

The Handbook for New Teachers is an essential and easy-to-use guide for K-5 teachers that is designed to make the first day of teaching stress-free and organized. Practices proven effective by experienced teachers are presented in a visually clear format, with all needed forms and examples to make them work. This handbook contains over 60 pages of reproducible forms. These include room centers and book labels, passes, parent contact letters and communication sheets, student contracts and behavior point sheets for graduated behavior levels, special education schedule forms, procedures lists, student homework and weekly folders, seating charts, work overdue and field trip notices, complete substitute teacher much more. Building on its teacher and special educational experience, Do2Learn has developed and tested this thoughtful and valuable resource for the new teacher.

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