Outstanding teachers have to be awesome multi-taskers; they have to have amazing time management skills; they need to be notetakers; they need to be vigilant in assessing students’ needs, and following up when necessary; and they need to be meticulous planners, yet be able to change all of those plans at a moment's notice. Teachers have to be on the ball at all times. Aside from being a surgeon, I don't believe that there is any job more delicate, detailed, and important than being a teacher. I learn through the words of my students, how much having a fun classroom means to them, and how much they appreciate the extra one-on-one or small group time I spend with them, to help them understand the materials.
Great teachers need to research their curriculum and best practices to give their students the best opportunities in their learning. Being that theories, practices, and strategies are always changing, it is important for teachers to continue their education and stay up on the latest ideas. How can we expect our students to gain knowledge if we are not knowledgeable ourselves?
Outstanding teachers need to monitor their students' progress constantly, making sure to spend extra time for and with the students that need it, because teachers can be some of the best advocates children have. Teachers reach out to their team members, mentors, co-workers, and all the resources they have to make sure that their students get the tools they need to succeed.
They need to plan their year, their units, and their lessons in advance, to make sure that they are ready for their students. Teachers can't be there for their students if they are worried about how they are going to teach the lessons that day.
Phenomenal teachers make learning fun, engaging, student-led, and inquiry-based. They use their students' multiple intelligences, strengths, and weaknesses to promote their students' learning and to help their students become better, more well-rounded people.
They make their classrooms welcoming, comforting, and safe for all. They are coaches, guides, advisors, role models, cheerleaders, and advocates for their students.
I am a teacher - and proud of it!