How to Be a Successful English Teacher

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How to Be a Successful English Teacher

How to Be an English Successful Teacher

Though many teachers strive to be successful, many also fall short. Learning how to be a successful teacher will help both students and teachers in the long run.

Get all necessary schooling. Parents and students like teachers with high degrees. Having a degree can also increase your confidence. 

Be confident in yourself. Students, parents, and teachers alike all appreciate confidence. Smile, maintain a firm handshake, and look people directly in the eyes

Be funny. Students like teachers with a sense of humor, but try to stay away from a dry sense of humor and go for sarcasm instead. Laugh with your students. 

Be entertaining. Students are more likely to pay attention to teachers who entertain them in between teaching. Jokes and personal stories are always good. 

Respect your students. They'll respect you. 

Be relate able. Students will respect you more and you will become an inspiration for them. They will see that you are not just in it for the paycheck. 

Keep in contact with parents. Parents love this. 

Don't let your personal life affect your mood towards your students. It's not your students' fault that your boyfriend broke up with you over the phone! 

Be happy. Simple as that

 Steps to Be a Successful Teacher

Step 1

Develop and implement effective classroom management policies, adapted as needed to each age group. For young children, incorporate tools to track daily behavior, such as a color-coded chart, and clearly labeled desks, cubbies and folders. Early elementary teachers also need to establish signals so children know when to be quiet, when to line up and when it's free time -- rhythmic clapping sequences are often effective. With older students, establish weekly take-home folders, daily and weekly schedules and a clear system of rewards and consequences for homework or behavioral infractions. With all age groups, be sure both the students and their families understand your expectations and policies from the very beginning, and be consistent in your implementation.

Step 2

Get organized before school starts and keep your classroom organized throughout the year. Use colorful bins for school supplies and outdoor toys in early elementary classrooms. Set up centers for art, reading and computers and keep all related supplies at those centers. With older children, use an inbox-outbox system for papers that need to be turned in. Create a return bin for library books. Hang office or bathroom passes by the door.

Step 3

Create a welcoming classroom environment that is conducive to learning. Younger students enjoy colorful posters and pictures on the walls showing concepts such as shapes, letters and numbers. A bright rug, a kid-sized bookshelf and some small beanbag chairs create a cozy corner for quiet reading time. Experiment with small groupings of desks and chairs to identify the best traffic flow for the students to move safely among centers and remain within your line of sight. Bring in a portable music system so students can enjoy music on special occasions.

Step 4

Develop strong networks with other staff members. Observe veteran teachers and ask them for their recommendations on successful techniques for dealing with classroom situations and working with individual students. Take advantage of professional training opportunities and workshops to stay current on education issues; supplement these by reading professional journals. Find a trusted, experienced colleague to serve as a mentor.

Step 5

Establish effective communication with your students' families, creating a partnership with the children's parents or guardians. Host a family night or parent orientation at the beginning of each school year so parents can see their children's classroom and experience a bit of their daily routine. Encourage parents and guardians to contact you with concerns or questions or to inform you of issues at home that might affect a student's classroom performance. Provide opportunities for parents to help in the classroom or with special activities. For elementary students, consider a "Friday folder" -- this is sent home every Friday containing the week's papers; parents sign the folder and return it with their students on Mondays. This routine improves the chances that parents remain engaged in their children's education.

Tips on Becoming a Successful Teacher


Attitude is everything when it comes to teaching. You will face students who talk back or rub you the wrong way, administrators who pile on work, and continually changing standards and curriculum. A successful teacher takes it all in stride and remembers why she became a teacher in the first place. If your focus is on helping your students, it will be much easier to handle the negativity, disruptions and changes that come as par for the course with the job.

Classroom Management

A chaotic classroom full of students who disrespect and disobey the teacher is not a place where learning can take place. Teachers who fail to manage their classrooms will have a hard time experiencing success. You must clearly outline the rules of the classroom and the consequences for breaking those rules. Then you must enforce the rules consistently and fairly. You must also have high expectations for your students. When they know what is expected of them and know you want them to succeed, they are more likely to perform according to those standards.

Knowledge and Education

   While having a Master's or Ph.D. degree does not guarantee success, continuing with your education will help you be a better teacher. You must stay up-to-date with the latest best practices, research and technology. What worked for the last five years may not work this year, and what worked with one group of students might not work with another -- so it helps to have a lot of tricks up your sleeve. The more you know, the easier it is to adapt when a particular lesson falls flat or when the standards change.

What is a Successful Classroom Teacher? 

          Most observers of a Successful Classroom say things like; students are attentive, students are engaged, learning is taking place, etc. They may even say that students are having FUN! All of these may be true, but what about the Successful Classroom's Teacher? To a casual observer, teachers in different Successful Classrooms often seem very different! 

Teacher education programs have struggled for years to identify how to 'produce' Successful Classroom Teachers. They debate whether teaching is an ART or a SCIENCE, which teaching STYLE/METHOD is most effective, and whether Successful Classroom Teachers are BORN or MADE. 

Sadly, a consensus has never been reached! Professional educators do not even agree on the PRODUCT of Successful Teaching! Because of this, college education classes spend too much time on the theories of education, and too little time on actually HOW to teach. Most prospective teachers graduate from college with the FALSE impression that there are MANY ways to teach Successfully. Without a Professional consensus, school administrators remain reluctant to mandate HOW their teachers should teach. 

Successful Classroom Teachers may seem different, but no matter their personality type or teaching style/method, they ALL have MASTERED these 12 Essential Skills! 

1. Successful teachers are KNOWLEDGE EXPERTS. 

They have a TOTAL understanding of their subject area. They are confident in their knowledge and do not NEED a textbook to tell them WHAT to teach! When a student asks them a question, Successful Classroom Teachers immediately know what the student needs to know to answer their own question! 

They stay abreast of the current literature (print and digital) in their subject area and in education. 

Successful Classroom Teachers have a love for their subject area and for education − their daily actions transfer some of that love of knowledge to their students. 

2. Successful teachers are LEARNING EXPERTS. 

They are PROFESSIONAL LEARNERS! Successful Classroom Teachers NEVER stop learning! 

They are aware of all the learning styles − ways that different people learn better − but, instead of worrying about addressing different learning styles in every lesson, they help each student 'discover' the learning style that works best for them. Successful Classroom Teachers provide the resources students need to practice and improve their 'personal' learning skills. 

The FIRST GOAL of Successful Classroom Teachers is to teach students How To Learn! 

3. Successful teachers have an excellent WORK ETHIC. 

They take the responsibilities inherent in the teaching profession seriously! They are NEVER satisfied with themselves − always looking for ways to improve the learning experiences of their students. Successful Classroom Teachers give their BEST effort to their students − every day! 

They consider missing a day of class as a disservice to their students. While missing a day is sometimes unavoidable, Successful Classroom Teachers DO NOT 'take' a day just because they have it coming! 

Successful Classroom Teachers recognize the importance of building a good Work Ethic in their students. Their class expectations have just the right amount of rigor − challenging students, but not overwhelming them. 

While they demand perfection from themselves, successful teachers encourage it in their students. They understand that each student must decide for themselves the level of work they are willing to give. Successful Classroom Teachers understand that students will work for a teacher they respect before they learn to work for themselves! 

Successful Classroom Teachers recognize and encourage students who take steps to improve their EFFORT in class! 

4. Successful teachers are PROFESSIONALLY HONEST. 

Successful Classroom Teachers are honest with their students. They will not 'bluff' their way around student questions. They are not afraid to say, 'I don't know'. Successful Classroom Teachers follow 'I don't know' with 'let's find out together'. 

They give students honest assignments. Successful Classroom Teachers NEVER ask students to do something that has no 'honest' learning objective − assignments students would rightly see as busy work! These teachers know that students' curiosity is not a fire they have to light − it is a natural flame they must be very careful not to extinguish! 

FUN is not a lesson objective of Successful Classroom Teachers. Their lesson objective is always LEARNING! They know when students experience 'honest' learning, most will think it is fun! 

These teachers NEVER give excuses − or accept excuses from their students. They take responsibility for their own actions (and their consequences) and expect students to do the same. 

They know ALL students will not make an 'A' in their class, but they expect ALL students to PASS − IF they make an honest effort to do so! Successful Classroom Teachers believe they have failed as a teacher if they are unable to 'encourage' a student to invest the EFFORT to pass their class! 

5. Successful teachers are CONSISTENT. 

They are NOT friends with students. They are NOT fair with students. They ARE teachers! Because of their daily actions, Successful Classroom Teachers are TRUSTED by their students to be consistent in their expectations and support them when they try to live up to those expectations. 

Successful Classroom Teachers treat ALL students the same − NEVER showing favoritism! They have the same expectations for ALL students, never lowering those expectations − for ANY reason! However, they are ALWAYS supportive − showing PRIDE in every student who is making an effort to meet their expectations. 

Successful Classroom Teachers are flexible without making 'exceptions' − especially with assignment due dates. Their 'support' of students includes allowing students who miss a due date to make an honest commitment to finish the assignment. These teachers place 'Learning-To-Learn' above meeting assignment due dates. 

Successful Classroom Teachers have constructed a CONSISTENT grading system that insures grade average will NEVER become a de-motivator for students making an 'honest' effort to pass their class! 

Successful Classroom Teachers have FEW class rules and enforce them CONSISTENTLY. They NEVER tell a student to do something (related to class rules) unless they are prepared to MAKE it happen − right then! They NEVER show anger or frustration with student behaviors. Successful Classroom Teachers show disappointment when student behaviors fail to meet expectations. 

Successful Classroom Teachers EARN the respect of students by being CONSISTENT and HONEST in ALL student/teacher interactions! These teachers know that their ability to manage their classroom learning environment is founded on mutual student/teacher RESPECT. 

6. Successful teachers CARE about student success. 

ANYONE can teach 'good' students. Successful Classroom Teachers spend the time and effort necessary to find ways to reach their 'other' students − never being satisfied until they do. In fact, these teachers celebrate the small success of 'other' students even MORE than the total success of 'good' students! 

They recognize when a student needs more support to be successful and when a student is ready to figure it out for themselves. Successful Classroom Teachers 'help' students work, but NEVER do the work for them! 

Successful Classroom Teachers provide EACH student the level of support they need to be able to feel the excitement of success! 

7. Successful teachers EMPATHIZE with students. 

They are able to see class material from a student's point of view! Successful Classroom Teachers understand when students have problems with class material. They are able to help students learn to break any concept into understandable bites. 

Successful Classroom Teachers are patient with students as they learn, understanding that something the teacher thinks is obvious may be very hard for a student to see! 

These teachers KNOW when a student is having a 'bad day'. Even though the solution may be out of their control, Successful Classroom Teachers do WHATEVER is necessary to keep from making the student's day worse! 

8. Successful teachers are DETAIL ORIENTED. 

Successful Classroom Teachers know details are important! They are concerned about curriculum details, helping students learn to identify what is important. They are concerned about lesson plan details, adjusting daily to the needs of their students. They pay attention to assessment details, helping students use formative assessment to improve their own learning. 

Successful Classroom Teachers know that their classroom learning environment depends on the attention they give to classroom management details. 

9. Successful teachers COMMUNICATE with students. 

They speak in specifics, not generalities! Successful Classroom Teachers give directions in a way that students understand exactly what is expected of them. They address specific behaviors of specific students − never general group behaviors. 

Successful Classroom Teachers recognize body language is a powerful form of communication − often making students think they are mind readers! These teachers 'listen' to both a student's words and body language. When there is a conflict between the two, Successful Classroom Teachers always trust the body language. 

They recognize that their own body language communicates with students − even when students are not consciously aware of it. Maintaining eye contact to show CONFIDENCE is a basic instinct in ALL species of mammals. Successful Classroom Teachers ALWAYS maintain eye contact with students! Their body language always shows interest and respect when talking with students. These teachers understand the principle of body space. They use degrees of proximity to control student behaviors, without provoking a negative response. 

Successful Classroom Teachers are prepared to give an educational reason for everything that happens in their classroom! They NEVER respond to students in a condescending or confrontational way. Successful Classroom Teachers KNOW how and when to use sarcasm in a positive way. They ALMOST NEVER raise their voice! These teachers understand that the moment a student/teacher argument begins, the teacher has already lost! 

10. Successful teachers OBSERVE students. 

Successful Classroom Teachers ALWAYS pay attention to what their students are doing! 

Their observations of students as they are learning allow Successful Classroom Teachers to know which students GET IT and which do not. They use observations to make 'adjustments' during class to provide support to those who need it. 

Successful Classroom Teachers almost always spot 'potential' problems, and take action, before they become 'discipline' problems − often by just raising an eyebrow or tilting their head after making eye contact with the student. 

11. Successful teachers make their class RELEVANT to students.

These teacher know that human beings learn WHAT we want, WHEN we want it. We are motivated by what we want MOST at any given time! Successful Classroom Teachers know that MOTIVATING students is ONLY possible by making their class material immediately relevant in students' lives. 

Every lesson begins with a HOOK − something that will catch the students' interest in the lesson topic. Students of Successful Classroom Teachers WANT to learn what is in the lesson! Students look forward to class every day because they KNOW it will be interesting. 

Most students' internal motivation for classwork (attention span) is fragile − even when the classwork is relevant! Successful Classroom Teachers work very hard to keep their actions from becoming de-motivators for students! These teachers recognize that trying to force a student to do an assignment is often the worst thing they can do! 

12. Successful teachers are CRITICAL THINKERS. 

They understand that critical thinking involves making decisions by comparing what one already knows (background knowledge) with current experience. Successful Classroom Teachers use a little class time 'teaching' background knowledge and a lot of class time challenging students to use their knowledge in NEW ways. Successful Classroom Teachers use some form of Socratic questioning to make critical thinking 'visible' to students. 

The SECOND GOAL of Successful Classroom Teachers is to teach students how to Think Critically! 

Successful Classroom Teachers are always thinking about ways to improve the educational experience of their students. They critically assess everything they do − deciding how to make good student experiences even better and modifying or discarding lessons that produce poor student experiences. 

Before making ANY lesson or classroom decision, Successful Classroom Teachers ALWAYS ask this question: How will this affect my students' interest in learning? 

Successful Classroom Teachers know that every interaction they have with students, parents, and colleagues is founded on their teaching philosophy. They base their teaching philosophy on sound educational practices and consistently use it to guide their daily actions − in and out of the classroom. 

Successful Classroom Teachers commit their teaching philosophy to writing, review it regularly, and 'update' it as their experience requires. 

The 'strength' of their teaching philosophy gives Successful Classroom Teachers CONFIDENCE in their educational decisions! 

ALL Professional Educators should agree on the following: 

Is teaching an art or a science? Successful Classroom Teachers are artists who use the science of education to make their students Successful Learners and Critical Thinkers. 

Is there one teaching style/method that is more successful than others? NO! Like students, teachers are human beings − with different personalities and backgrounds. Through practice and experience, Successful Classroom Teachers apply their SKILLS to develop a personal teaching style/method that fits their own personality, background, and teaching philosophy. 

Are Successful Classroom Teachers born or made? Some people are born with a 'talent' for teaching, but almost anyone can LEARN the 12 Essential Skills of a Successfull Classroom Teacher. 

A SUCCESSFUL CLASSROOM TEACHER is one who provides the discipline and environment necessary for student learning. Establishing and maintaining this discipline and environment require the successful application of ALL 12 of the Essential Skills. 

The PRODUCT of Successful Education is a student with an understanding of How-To-Learn and apply knowledge through Critical Thinking. Skillful Learners and Critical Thinkers are able to learn any thing, any where, any time they need it − and apply that knowledge to become CONTRIBUTING members of society.