What Makes a Teacher Great

What does it take to be a great teacher?  And how do we measure greatness in education?  Although Azul Terronez is not a University professor, he has been asking these questions for many years.  Watch his 15 minute Ted Talk and hear his insights!

So, let’s summarize some of his points.

  • “Great teachers eat apples.” Students want to see you as someone who is willing to receive a gift from them, as well as a sense of “goodness and trust.” The apple is a symbol of the relationship you have with your students.
  • “A great teacher is chill.” “Don’t take it to seriously, be calm in all situations, don’t get overwhelmed.” You need to know your learners and understand their “language.” Listen Deeply to Students.
Apple Picture to go with the line "Great teachers eat apples."
  • A great teacher loves to learn. Show your students how to learn. Learn with your students! Inspire kids with the idea that learning is important.
  • “A great teacher isn’t a teacher.” Enduring understanding comes from piecing together experiences. Sometimes this is lost in the classroom as assessment of knowledge becomes more important than the knowledge itself.
  • “A great teacher understands that students have a life outside of school.” Appearances in school may not reflect a students personal life, and student success may have factors outside the classroom that you are not aware of.
  • “A great teacher helps students if they notice a struggle.” Don’t make assumptions of what students can and cannot do. Wait and watch and rescue them when they get stuck. Listen!!
  • “A great teacher sings.” You need to watch the video to understand this!!!

A good teacher is a content or knowledge keeper, but to be a great teacher you need to deeply understand your students!  Help your students learn to listen, and listen to your students.

Thanks for working to be a great teacher, and also for reading the Faculty Learning Corner!!  Have a great weekend!