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An Effective, Professional Teacher

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Introduction

The statement ‘Teaching – reflections, questions, decisions’ sums up what it means to be an effective teacher. Teachers are constantly making decisions about professionalism and ethics, teaching strategies, classroom management, and how to keep their students motivated. These decisions can have a major impact on student learning and how effective they are as teachers. Questioning is an essential—and one of the most important—instructional skills that a teacher can possess. Teachers need to be able to ask the appropriate types and levels of questions, such as the high and low order questions based on Bloom’s taxonomy, as well as being skilled in responding to students answers. Teachers also need to be constantly evaluating and reflecting on the curriculum, the teaching process, the learners and the diversity of their backgrounds and how it can affect their learning process.

Discussion

Decisions

Professionalism and Ethics

‘Teacher professionalism’ has played a significant role in improving the quality of student learning in Australian schools (Preston, 1993, p. 5). Whitton, Barker, Nosworthy, Sinclair & Nanlohy (2010, pp. 49-60), divided the standards of teaching into six categories: academic – formal academic qualifications needed to become a teacher; ethics – behaving ethically with the right conduct and practice; legal – total compliance with child protection requirements, laws on working with children and duty of care; professional – lifelong learning and professional development by reading, research or study; personal – appropriate personal presentation and personal development; and cultural – accepting and respecting all cultures and everyone in the school community.

Teachers need to make decisions on h...

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University of Tasmania. (2010). Maslow’s hierarchy of needs pyramid. Retrieved April 19, 2011, from http://www.ruralhealth.utas.edu.au/comm-lead/leadership/maslow-diagram.htm

Wesley, D. C., (1998). Eleven ways to be a great teacher. Educational Leadership 55(5), 80-81. Retrieved from http://proquest.umi.com.dbgw.lis.curtin.edu.au/pqdweb?did=26126116&sid=1&Fmt=6&clientId=22212&RQT=309&VName=PQD&cfc=1

Whitton, D., Barker, K., Nosworthy, Sinclair, C., & Nanlohy, P. (2010). Learning for teaching: Teaching for learning. South Melbourne: Cengage Learning.