The most important qualities of an outstanding teacher

Teachers who inspire students to want to learn are the teachers students remember. Teachers who go above and beyond giving lectures and grading homework deserve to be called outstanding teachers, and outstanding teachers share a number of qualities. Organization, the desire to continuously learn, creativity, caring about students, and good communication skills are all important attributes of outstanding teachers. Their students trust them and are eager to participate in their classes.


Teachers who stay up to date on their subject as well as how to teach are best prepared to help their students learn. They attend conferences, read journals and books and otherwise actively demonstrate the desire to be current on the art of teaching and their subjects. They actively pursue knowledge, and students pick up on this quality when teachers bring new pieces of information they have learnt to the classroom.


Teachers who take an active interest in their students' lives both inside and outside the classroom are ones who get the most respect. They are helpful when students need more time to finish an assignment, are available for tutoring or just to talk, and they listen when students talk. They take what their students say about their quality of teaching seriously and try to improve upon it when possible. An outstanding teacher also builds trusting relationships with students and a good rapport with them.


Outstanding teachers take the information they learn and present it in such a way that students are engaged and interested. They use teaching techniques that touch a chord with their students and help them remember lessons. They adapt, mould and originate teaching ideas that may be somewhat unusual.


Communication is a vital part of being a teacher. Outstanding teachers are excellent communicators, not only of lesson material, but also of course expectations. They are also good listeners and take a genuine interest in listening to what their students have to say. They are clear on lesson objectives and meet those objectives in each class. They are organised and make efficient use of time. Outstanding teachers also make themselves available for conferences and e-mails with parents and stay in touch with them about classroom events, discipline and lessons.

Classroom Management

An outstanding teacher is able to instil and encourage respect in the classroom. She maintains discipline and encourages it at all times. Students know what is expected of them, and they strive to reach the teacher's high expectations.

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About the Author

Leyla Norman has been a writer since 2008 and is a certified English as a second language teacher. She also has a master's degree in development studies and a Bachelor of Arts in anthropology.