07 August, 2008

What Makes a Good Teacher?

By Richard M. Reis

1. Good Teachers Really Want to Be Good Teachers.
2. Good Teachers Take Risks.
3. Good Teachers Have a Positive Attitude.
4. Good Teachers Never Have Enough Time.
5. Good Teachers Think of Teaching as a Form of Parenting.
6. Good Teachers Try to Give Students Confidence.
7. Good Teachers Try to Keep Students-And Themselves-Off Balance.
8. Good Teachers Try to Motivate Students by Working Within Their Incentive System.
9. Good Teachers Do Not Trust Student Evaluations Neither do bad teachers.
10. Good Teachers Listen to Their Students.

What students expect from good teachers?

* are available to assist students with questions on the subject, and they show concern.
* do not have a lofty, standoffish attitude.
* can interact with a student on an individual basis.
* want to know each individual student.
* give time, effort, and attention to their students.
* are personable, on your side.
* are willing to be a friend to students.
* are actually interested in the students.
* are actively involved with their students.
* are first friends, then educators. The friend encourages, supports, and understands; the educator teaches, challenges, and spurs the student on.
* love what they teach and convey that love to the class.
* have both an enthusiasm for and an encyclopedic knowledge of the subject.
* have such an obvious enthusiasm for what they do that it is contagious and their students pick up on it.
* have a desire to learn, and for others to learn, all of the exciting things they have learned.
* are obviously excited about teaching. When a teacher enjoys teaching, it is usually obvious, and that enjoyment is passed on to the students. The classes I've had with teachers who loved the subject they were teaching are the ones I've enjoyed the most, and the ones I've been the most eager to learn in. A teacher who isn't enthusiastic can ruin even the most fascinating of subjects.

To read this article in its original context, please 'click here'

Author:Richard M. Reis, Ph.D. Stanford University 440 Escondido Mall Bldg 02-530, Room 104 Stanford, CA 94305-3036 (650) 725-0919 (650) 736-8934 fax

Executive Director, Alliance for Innovative Manufacturing at Stanford Consulting Professor, Electrical Engineering Department, Lecturer, Mechanical Engineering Department