A teacher’s job is quite demanding. Between preparing lesson plans, keeping up with education standards, and tracking students’ progress, teachers barely have time to worry about themselves. However, teachers must constantly seek ways to become better at teaching.
In this blog, we share tips on how to improve teaching skills. We focus on tactics, such as short-term courses for working professionals, that educators can execute even while working a full-time job.
Skills to Help Improve Teaching Skills
Teachers do not merely provide information to students. They are expected to shape students’ minds to prepare them for the world.
But that’s not all. Teachers also take on administrative tasks—they work with administrators in building an environment that’s conducive to learning and communicate with parents regarding their child’s progress and other updates within the school.
As such, teachers are expected to possess a wide range of skills on top of teaching strategies and subject matter knowledge. What are these skills that will help you become a better teacher?
- Planning and Organizational Skills
- Classroom Management
- Clarity of Instruction
- Interpersonal Skills
- Time Management
8 Ways to Improve Teaching Skills
As educators, it only seems natural that teachers pursue ways to expand their skillset. And as a teacher yourself, you need to be updated on new developments or ideas in your field to provide a holistic education for your students. Here are things you can do to help you become a better teacher:
Enrich Your Mind
To keep growing as a teacher, you should be willing to do the work. You should be aware of new developments in teaching and in the field you teach.
As such, it’s important that teachers read and research outside the classroom. By doing so, you’ll encounter fresh approaches to teaching. Developments in other fields can help enrich your understanding of child or adolescent behavior and how to teach them better.
Reading to expand your mind is a good way to ensure that you keep growing as a person and educator.
Reflect on Your Teaching Style and Practices
If you’re asking, “How to improve my teaching skills?” then you must be aware that you can still improve as a teacher. Use this as a jumping-off point to set your goals for improving your skills.
Take time to reflect on your teaching practices, what happens in your classes, as well as your career trajectory. You may use a journal to help with your reflection practices.
From there, you can consider what skills need improvement and what you can do about them. Once you’ve started working on your skills, you may also use your journal to track your progress.
Lean in to Technology
Technology has become integral in classrooms. It is widely accepted that technology can aid students’ learning when used strategically.
Teachers can use technology to present lessons in a new way, show videos to enrich learning, and create interactive exercises.
Technology can also help teachers track grades and create lesson plans, worksheets, and study guides. Use the Internet to find content and resources to help with your lessons.
Incorporating technology in the classroom can also be a way to strengthen relationships with parents and guardians. You can maintain communication lines with them online to make it easier to work with them.
Additionally, teachers can access learning materials they can read to help improve their teaching skills. They can read e-books or articles, listen to podcasts or videos, and other online references about new teaching strategies.
Maintain Positive Student-Teacher Relationships
You can read about classroom management tactics and learning styles to improve your teaching practices, but those will still be ineffective if not informed by your students’ unique personalities.
As a teacher, it’s important to maintain a positive relationship with your students. You need a sufficient understanding of your students’ personalities, interests, learning styles, and context. With that knowledge, you can provide additional support when needed or simply be more patient when they’re struggling.
A strong relationship with students can help teachers practice their interpersonal skills. It can help you build a safe environment for students and guide them accordingly.
If you’re not sure where to improve your teaching skills, you can ask your colleagues, seniors, and students for feedback. Receiving feedback may be tough, but it can help you understand your strengths and weaknesses.
It may help to seek feedback from individuals you trust will give constructive criticism. Peers who teach the same subject matter or year level as you may have valuable insight, for instance.
Although it may be challenging to get constructive criticism from students. It may help to ask students to assess specific aspects of your teaching methods. For example, you may ask students to answer a survey on assignments or new learning formats.
Consult with a Mentor
Another way to get genuine feedback about your teaching is through a mentor. Ideally, a mentor is someone with more teaching experience than you.
Your mentor can be someone from your department—they can offer contextualized insight since they are familiar with the specific challenges in your school. However, it can also be a former professor or another veteran teacher or educator you know.
A mentor is someone you can treat as a role model. You should be able to ask them for their feedback and expect that they will help you enhance your teaching. You should also be able to go to them for support in resolving issues or discuss ideas.
With a mentor, you don’t have to navigate the professional world alone. They can tell you about available resources, like short programs online, that can help you grow and advance your career.
Network with Other Teachers
Networking events are a great way to meet others in your profession. But how can meeting other educators help you grow as a teacher?
You can exchange ideas with each other and help each other grow. Teachers from other schools and locations may offer unique insights and practices that you can implement in your classroom.
They can offer insight on how you can improve your teaching skills, too, or recommend online short courses they found helpful. Likewise, they can inform you of training and career opportunities.
Networking events are a valuable resource for educators who are serious about their growth.
Take Short Courses
While pursuing a postgraduate degree is ideal, short courses are another venue for improving one’s skills.
Short courses online are extremely doable. First of all, you can complete the courses at your pace. You don’t need to rush to campus to catch a class after work—you can access the learning materials at any time.
Second, the short programs for teachers are concise and targeted at specific sets of skills. Look for a course that targets a skill you want to develop.
Short courses are a great way to continue growing while you’re not yet ready to commit to a postgraduate degree.
Become a Better Teacher with Online Post Grad
The best teachers know that there is always room for improvement. When you are responsible for the education of new generations, improving your teaching skills is a must. Depending on your needs and preferences, choose among the list of convenient ways teachers can hone their skills.
Online PostGrad makes quality education flexible and affordable for hard-working teachers. Explore contemporary skills and ideas from seasoned educators at your convenience.
Let’s talk about the best professional development options for teachers. Send us a message today.