From “Teachers as Leaders”

I have been looking over some material from Independent School Management, Inc. (isminc.org) on Teacher Evaluation and development. Here is an interesting list they have put together on what makes the best teachers: (from “Twenty Principles for Teaching Excellence” by M. Walker Buckalew, pp. 39-40)

“Many of the most obvious characteristics of teachers whose approaches are associated with high levels of student performance in moderate stress contexts are characteristics to be found in common with contemporayr views of good leadership.
What are those characteristics?
– knowledge and expertise which is readily perceived (by followers);
– a drive to stay ‘current’ in relevant fields;
– repeatedly articulated (to followers) standards for performance and conduct;
– a ‘results’ orientation;
– a ‘vision’ of the process and the end product (and the ability and willingness to describe that vision to followers, often and well);
– a facility for infusing routine activities with meaning;
– a passion for preparation;
– flexibility, especially in design and evaluation;
– humaneness (as perceived by the followers);
– a knack for confronting-without-demeaning;
– the ability to teach (and not merely assign) responsibility;
– constant attention to reinforcement principles (feedback).

It is my hope to comment on many of these. Without either fully agreeing or disagreeing with all of them, I found them to be thought provoking.

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