10 Traits of a Good Teacher
Q. What do
good teachers do? How can you spot a good teacher?
Researchers Ellis, Worthington and
Larkin of the University of Oregon's National Center to Improve the Tools of
Educators summarized these 10 principles of effective instruction:
1. Active Engagement -- The amount of time students are actively engaged
in relevant instructional tasks increases vs. other teachers.
2. Experience of success -- If students do not experience success, their
motivation quickly disappears.
3. Content coverage and opportunity to learn -- The more content is
covered, the greater the potential for student learning.
4. Grouping for instruction -- Students achieve the most when they are
engaged in learning activities supervised directly by teachers.
5. Scaffolded instruction - -Students benefit from a carefully and
systematically sequenced series of prompted content, materials, tasks and
6. Addressing forms of knowledge -- Teachers should address all forms of
knowledge: declarative (basic facts and
vocabulary); procedural knowledge (steps used to solve problems), and
conditional (when and where to use certain strategies).
7. Organizing knowledge -- Moving from easier skills to more difficult
skills helps students make progress.
8. Teaching strategically -- Teaching students strategies that can be
applied across various settings and situations helps them hone their skills.
9. Explicit instruction -- Teachers can make instruction explicit by
clearly stating the goals of the lesson, structuring the lesson in an obvious
format and presenting content in a direct fashion.
10. Teaching sameness -- Purposively designing instruction to help
students recognize patterns and organize knowledge can help students learn.
more about the qualities of a good teacher, and how districts can discern
candidates who are capable of building effective relationships with students,
especially those in poverty, see the Haberman Educational Foundation, www.habermanfoundation.org This
is the home of the National Center for Alternative Certification Information,
featuring the concepts of distinguished educational researcher Martin Haberman.
Get Haberman's book, Star Teachers: The
Ideology and Best Practices of Effective Teachers Serving Diverse Student in