Effective teaching

culled from Department of education and training, Western Australia.

Having high expectations
Effective teachers strive to motivate and
engage all their students in learning rather than

A good environment is important for learning and teaching.

A good environment is important for learning and teaching.

simply accepting that some students cannot
be engaged and are destined to do poorly.
They believe every student is capable of achieving
success at school and they do all they can to find ways of making each student successful.
Effective teachers have high expectations of students in terms of both their standard of learning and their behaviour, and they help their students meet those expectations. They also have high expectations of themselves and their own learning.
Acknowledging individual differences
Effective teachers personalise the learning for their
students. They understand that students develop
at different rates and that in every classroom there
will be a range of student abilities and aptitudes.
They accommodate the different needs of students
in their class rather than pitch their teaching to
the middle, letting some students be bored while
others struggle or are unable to do the work.
Effective teachers use techniques that have each
student working on tasks that engage and challenge
them to achieve their personal best. They understand
that students learn best when they are presented with
new material in a way that enables them to connect it
to what they already understand and know how to do.
Effective teachers also understand that students learn
best if their particular culture, background and abilities
are acknowledged by the teacher in the way they teach.

Using a range of pedagogies
Effective teachers use techniques that best
serve the learning needs of their students.
There are many things that students can learn themselves
through discovery, with the teacher structuring the
learning to suit. There also are many things that
require the teacher to teach in a more direct way.
Students not only learn by being exposed to learning
opportunities but they also need to be explicitly taught
those things it is important for all students to know.
Some students will learn these things quickly and
with only minimal direct teaching. Other students will
need concerted direct teaching and correction by the
teacher before they master the learning required.
Effective teachers help students learn on their own as well
as with and from others. They know that students learn best
if they are provided with opportunities to learn not only from
the teacher but also from other students and from sources
outside the school that are now more readily accessible
through various forms of technology.
Encouraging student responsibility
Effective teachers teach in a way that encourages students
to take greater responsibility for their own learning.
They make sure their students know what the goals of the
learning program are; understand how these goals will
be assessed; know whether they are on track to achieve
success; and are actively involved in evaluating their
own learning.
Having mastery of their teaching content
Effective teachers have a thorough knowledge of their
subject content and skills. Through this, they inspire in
their students a love of learning. They also understand
how students best learn concepts, content and skills.
Effective teachers use their knowledge of learning processes
to determine which will be most effective to help the
particular students in their classes learn successfully.
Providing a safe environment
Effective teachers provide a
safe and orderly environment,
both physically and emotionally,
so students can achieve
their potential. They know
students learn best if they
are in a classroom where
they feel safe and confident
to attempt new tasks even
if at first they are unsure
about how to tackle them.
Monitoring progress and providing feedback
Effective teachers closely monitor each student’s
achievements. This enables them to provide
every one of their students with regular feedback
on their performance, and gives them valuable
information to assess the impact of their teaching.
Effective teachers are in the habit of constantly
refl ecting on how well they are getting through to
their students and searching for better ways of
teaching those who are not responding as well
as extending those who are achieving well.
Effective teachers understand the standards their
students are expected to achieve and use a range of
assessment methods to determine the extent to which
those standards are being met and to plan the next steps.
Building positive relationships
Effective teachers develop productive
relationships with their students – they get
to know them and take a particular interest
in their overall development and progress.
They treat their students with respect
and expect the same in return.
Effective teachers work collaboratively
to benefit student learning.


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