Teachers have the incredible task of helping children learn, grow, and develop into confident learners. However, just like their students, they are continuously learning and developing their own professional skills, as well. Being lifelong learners makes being an educator more exciting! We’ve compiled a list of some of the most important skills for teachers to have, practice, and use as tools in their classrooms. Remember that it is okay if you weren't "born with" some of these skills because these are things you will learn in your major as well as in your career!
This is one of the most important skills for anyone working with children or youth to possess. It requires lots of practice, but in order for you to help your students along their own path of discovery and learning, you need to progress at a pace that they are suitable for. This includes having patience with their learning of rules, responsibilities, and appropriate behavior.
Having confidence in yourself, your students, and your coworkers will take you far in your career as a teacher. Some of the most successful teachers are those who are able to take ownership of their lessons and are confidently able to explain the why behind what they do. Having confidence in your students also lets them know you have high expectations for them and builds trust.
This skill is one that will aid you in ALL aspects of your job. Being able to think critically and creatively about problems will allow you to teach your children in fun, engaging ways that are individualized to your students. Your relationships with your students will grow and expand as you explore imagination together!
Technology and curriculum are constantly improving and changing so it’s important for teachers to be
able to adapt and change with new developments. Learning to embrace changes and use them to enhance your teaching is a key skill that teachers should develop. This is just another key to being a lifelong learner and educator!
5. Ability to Work Well with Others
Although teachers are leaders within their own classrooms, they also work closely with a team of others teachers, administrators, counselors, and parents. Teachers must be able to be team players and not only do their part, but trust others to do their part as well. Collaboration and cooperation are two important skills teachers should practice as they learn to work well with others.
Being able to communicate effectively with others is a critical skill. Teachers need to be able to clearly set expectations and rules for their students. Teachers also work closely with a team of other educators, so being able to communicate thoughts and feelings in an effective and appropriate way is a great skill to have to ensure smooth sailing. Communication will also help you gain healthy relationships with the parents and families of your students! It is okay if this is not one of your strengths now, because you will learn a lot about ways to communicate effectively in your classes at the McKay school!
Some of these skills might come more naturally to you, while others might struggle with them, but either way, ALL of these can be learned and developed through practice! Teachers are always learning and growing, so get out there and practice some of these skills!
For more information, check out out our sources!
9 Useful Skills for Teachers
15 Professional Development Skills for Modern Teachers
20 Essential Skills and Qualities Every Teacher Needs