Being a good teacher doesn’t mean being an expert in the subject you’re teaching. It simply means being able to to help someone make remarkable progress and understanding in the subject being taught. Learning how to teach is a skill in itself.
- Not everyone is the same. Treat every student differently
- Let them struggle a little
- Encourage them to ask questions and ask them questions
- Patience is key
- Lecturing is not teaching
- Engage the one learning and get to know them on a 1 to 1 basis
- Once they advance, keep adding more
- Work together. Take their ideas and teach them through examples
- A little positive encouragement always helps
Learning how to Teach
Learning how to teach is an important skill for any instructor. Unfortunately, the conventional class room setting is what most teachers are exposed to. The person learning needs hand on engagement. Critical thinking doesn’t come from copying information and repeating it. Critical thinking is a way of problem solving. Through controlled trial and error, new associations can be made by the learner. There cannot be a “superior” in teaching.
As a teacher, your job is to work with the person learning and make sure they ask questions. When you get a question, it should be a priority to break it down buy asking a question back. Allow them to make mistakes. Don’t just correct their mistakes, show them how to correct it themselves. Learning how to teach is an important habit to get into. The teacher must realize that explaining the “right” way to do something is very relative to each person’s experience.
Most of the time, technique is important, but grasping the concept isn’t as simple as an explanation. Each student is different. Some may learn in a similar way, but there are no “stupid” students. As a teacher, you should be able to adapt to the student and figure out a way to help him learn. Some people learn better through visual cues, some are good at listening and breaking it down mentally, some are only able to grasp something by hands on experience. Find out their strengths and weaknesses and work from there. Using analogies they can relate to has also been known to work very well.
If there are multiple people learning, it’s good to encourage team work. Let them exchange ideas with you and the other students. Working to solve a problem together will allow for many different ideas and perspectives to come out. As they begin to understand the skill and grasp the baby steps a little better, it’s important to progressively add on new challenges. The teacher should always keep who ever is learning on their toes. The teacher shouldn’t come with the mindset of superiority. The teacher and the one learning should be learning together. There should be no authority figure. It’s good to throw out a little motivation, just don’t over do it. Be patient and let them take as long as they have to.