How to Spot a Great Teacher

Serena is a 17-year-old from New York City. She occupies her time by reading, laughing, and chasing her dreams. She hopes to be a writer someday.


            The start of a new school year is fast approaching. Students will return to the hustle and bustle of their academic lives. Naturally, it is important for youths to be responsible with their studies to ensure that they achieve high grades and absorb the information that they learn. However, the role of the teacher is significant and crucial for students. A bad teacher, whether unfriendly, condescending, complicating, or overwhelming, will instill neither knowledge nor attention in his or her students. As a parent, how can you tell if your child or teen has a great teacher? Here are some things to take note of:


Overall Good Grades: If your child is doing well in school, that’s great! But one student does not mean that there is a great teacher involved. Ask your child how the rest of the class did on that last math test. If the majority of the class does well on the exams, then you know the teacher must be doing something right.


Ranting and Raving: Parents always ask their children how their day at school was. When a student can’t stop talking about how much they enjoy a particular class, it is safe to assume that the teacher of that class is a good one. Most kids will come right out and talk about how much they love a certain teacher, and that is always a good sign.


Genuine Enjoyment: Only a great teacher can make a class enjoyable. Regardless of which class – since every student has different interests and therefore varying opinions on which subjects are OK and which are hated – a teacher worthy of the occupation will find a way to teach the subject matter in an interesting way, so students are learning and having fun simultaneously.


Parent-Teacher Meetings: These meetings provide parents with the opportunity to meet their child’s teachers. Parents can use their personal judgment to determine the quality of a teacher, which should not be too difficult because spotting a great teacher is not hard when you meet him or her in person.


Amazing teachers make school more bearable, learning more fun, class more interesting, and academia more inspiring. And it’s always good to know that your child or teen might just actually enjoy school a little more because of one great teacher.



Photo: Thomas Favre-Bulle from Flickr

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