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6 Ways to Great Teaching Beyond the Degree

Updated on October 18, 2022
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Author Audrey Hunt received the Teacher of the Year award. She shares specific qualities that make a good teacher and parent.

Master Teacher Audrey Hunt, Walnut Creek, Ca. 2000
Master Teacher Audrey Hunt, Walnut Creek, Ca. 2000 | Source

"The highest of all callings is that of a caring teacher" ~ Audrey Hunt.

A good teacher can make a huge difference in a student's life. This article addresses the qualities that make a good teacher, with or without a degree.

6 Qualifications for Excellent Teaching

The qualifications of an excellent teacher go far beyond credentials, far beyond talent, and even far beyond ability. The key word here is initiative. It's the first step toward qualified teaching, closing the door to fear.

A talented teacher without initiative never reaches his full potential. Incorporate the following to be an inspiring teacher:

  1. Teach by example. Share inspiring stories about people their age.
  2. Always, always find something to praise. Be truthful and specific. Praise the act and not the student.
  3. In pursuing excellence, always be open to new ideas. Never rest on your laurels. Learn all you can about your craft.
  4. Always strive to do a little bit more. Create that little extra something that will take you from ordinary to extraordinary .
  5. Develop your listening skills.
  6. Prepare your lessons in advance.


Qualities Of Greatness

The qualifications for an inspiring teacher go far beyond a teacher's degree.

Not everyone that wants to teach is qualified to do so. And I'm not speaking of teachers who hold a teaching degree. Anyone can qualify for a degree if they work hard enough.

The qualifications for being an excellent teacher go much deeper than this:

  • A love for people of all ages, backgrounds, ethnicities, and abilities.
  • Patience
  • A positive outlook and attitude
  • Compassion
  • Understanding
  • Non-critical. Guide, don't criticize.
  • Supportive
  • Trustworthy
  • Focus
  • A thirst for knowledge
  • Consistently good-natured
  • Fun
  • Creative
  • Caring
  • Motivating
  • Gentleness
  • Encouraging
  • Dependable
  • Good sense of humor
  • Inspiring

These are the essential elements needed for excellence. If you want to excel, you must not be satisfied with limiting yourself to be just a good teacher. Go for greatness. Strive for excellence.

The mediocre teacher says. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.

William Arthur Ward

In Conclusion

Find the beauty in each student. Everyone is gifted in some way. As the teacher encourages, supports, and inspires that special gift will be discovered, it starts to grow.

Feed your class 'mental vitamins' through the power of your words. Focus on the attributes of an excellent teacher as listed above. If you are weak in one point, work on it until it becomes part of you.

You will find different types of learners in your class as a teacher. This is one of the biggest challenges you will face. Respect these different styles and support them. Use the strengths of each one as you teach.

Each student will have an impact on you. And you will leave an imprint on the minds of those you teach, even for the rest of their lives.


Talent is Never Enough ~ John C. Maxwell

© 2011 Audrey Hunt


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