You would probably answer this question by recalling the names of those teachers who impressed you along your path as a student. Those kind of people who would make you love chemistry even if you normally hate it.
But if we try to unmask the secrets of this amazing job, what would we find in the hat of those magicians called teachers?
- They should do whatever voodoo it takes to get their students relaxed. A relaxed mind is ready to absorb new content and also to produce good quality content. If you do not believe me, call the most famous neurologist in your neighbourhood. 😉
- They need to be passionate about the subject they are teaching. It is a kind of a clichee, but without enthusiasm it is almost impossible to get people interested.
- Teachers need to be curious about life in general and genuinely interested in people.
- Good teachers should have a little bit of an actor within, even a bad one. For instance, momentum is needed before you expose your students to a new piece of information.
- Teachers should be the embodiment of the best student themselves, keeping their eyes and hearts open. Learning, unlearning, learning…
- Empathy is also one of the most precious tools in the Teacher’s Kit. You have to be able to connect to absolutely everyone, or at least try 321 times before you give up.
- They need to be able to make conversation about nothing and also about nonsense. Cross a clown with a philosopher to get what I am pointing at. But in order to do this in a natural way, you need to have a questioning mind. Go back to number 3, then move to number 9. Are you tired? I hope not. 🙂
- Did you say patience? Multiply it with 1001 and you have it.
- Teachers need to keep in mind that they know nothing and this is the proper starting point. The learning process is actually more of a (re)discovery. We tend to be too much keen on getting the right answers rather than asking more and more questions which in the end will open new possibilities to look at a situation.
- Do you know such a person? Hmmmm… If teaching is your job, what about becoming that person yourself?
PS. The list is open! What would you add?