Being a teacher is one of the most challenging roles to fulfil. A teacher doesn't just impart knowledge but shapes an individual's personality. Teachers have an immense effect on their students' lives. It has been especially challenging for the teacher to shift from the offline mode of learning to the online mode. Teachers had to adapt to the technology and online quickly.
A teacher plays a crucial role inside as well as outside of the classroom. Teachers perform various activities like planning properly, providing direction, executing the plan and evaluating the learning using appropriate teaching tools and techniques. It is very necessary for a teacher to communicate their teaching effectively. This effectiveness and communication closely depend on the teaching competencies of an educator. At some point in our lives, we all have experienced the transformational power of teachers in our lives.
In this blog, we will take you through the teaching competencies which serve as the base for evaluation and successful growth of teachers.
What are teaching competencies?
A teaching competency refers to a set of professional skills that allow for the smooth conduction of practical teaching situations. Competencies are skillsets that enable a teacher to be successful. To make student learning more efficient, teachers are required to have expertise in wide-ranging fields to allow students to make critical decisions.
Different Types of Teaching Competencies
Let us now discuss the various types of teaching competencies required for a successful teaching and learning environment.
· Being Understanding
· Managing Classroom
· Maintaining Interactive Classroom Environment
· Assessing students
· Encouraging Teamwork
· Well Planned Lesson
· Ability to Adjust
· Enhancing Engagement
Now, we will discuss each of these in detail.
1. Being Understanding
One of the most important traits of a teacher is to be understanding. Being a teacher, you must understand and respond to your students' requirements and feelings.
· Listen patiently
· Consider other people's opinions.
· Ask questions without hesitation for clarification and better understanding.
· Be extremely professional while communicating.
· Ask critical questions to develop critical thinking.
· Effectively and sensibly communicate sensitive matters.
· Make the complex concept decipherable for students
· Talk in a polite and understanding tone
· Have a positive attitude towards students
2. Managing Classroom
Classroom management is a challenge and a serious concern for many teachers. There are various strategies to maintain discipline in your classroom and keep your students engaged in the class. There is an increase in student achievement when classroom rules and procedures are applied systematically.
· Don’t discourage students when they make mistakes. Treat them as a part of their learning process.
· Ensure that the classroom is a safe and supportive environment for all students
· Set clear goals and expectations of the class
· Listen to students with empathy, warmth and sensitivity
· Redirect the student’s behaviour in a positive direction
· Learn to manage conflicts in the classroom
· Assist students in solving problems
· Observe and interact with students positively
· Encourage and motivate your students.
· Minimise reinforcement of a student’s unacceptable behaviour.
· Welcome the diversity of culture in the classroom
3. Maintaining Interactive Classroom Environment
Teaching competencies also include conducting sessions that are interactive so that the students pay attention and are engaged in the topic. You, as a teacher, need to use suitable strategies to invite that energy into the conversation.
· Instead of screaming, try making friendly eye contact with that student and encouraging them to focus on what is being taught.
· Assign more engaging tasks to them to keep them engaged in the subject
· Conduct thoughtful discussions on the related topics
· Inculcate safe and ethical behaviour in your actions
4. Assessing students
Assessing students can be challenging. It's not about "just grading" but also identifying the gaps between what the teacher teaches and what the student understands. The assessments should be engaging and justified for the students.
· Assessments are to be conducted throughout the learning process
· Ensure feedback and evaluation are provided on time
· Provide constructive feedback and assessment
· Report progress and achievements of the students in a timely manner
· Encourage students to self-assess and work on the required aspects
· Help students give feedback to their peers
· Give plenty of options to students to showcase their ability
· Set achievable expectations and communicate class targets to students clearly and effectively
· Assessments should align with the learning instructions and requirements
· Give students fluidity in their creativity and innovation
5. Encouraging Teamwork
It’s an important aspect of teaching competency to encourage teamwork among students. To instil the team's spirit, conduct group activities and team projects. This will enable students to learn from each other as well as have fun in the process.
· Divide the teams according to learning levels
· Treat all the teams equally
· Participate in team decision-making.
· Share information appropriately and willingly.
6. Well Planned Lesson
It is important to plan the lesson beforehand to communicate your subject effectively. This is where the strategic and structured approach to teaching comes in! This approach emphasises the knowledge of lessons to ensure that students have understood the concept and you are able to clear any doubts.
A well-planned lesson includes the following features:
· Divide the topic into smaller subtopics
· Try planning the class according to the time allotted
· Use audio-visuals for better understanding
· Instructional design and delivery should be clear and effective
· Continue the education beyond the classroom through article links, videos, messenger, email, forums and discussion threads.
7. Ability to Adjust
To handle and maintain classroom etiquette, it is essential for a teacher to be flexible and adjust to changing classroom situations and student behaviour.
· Learn to handle multiple demands with professionalism
· Prioritise their education and personality development needs
· Mould your teaching aspects and change strategies according to the students' requirements
· Be open to new ideas brought in by the students
· Plan through unexpected difficulties
8. Enhancing Engagement
Student engagement and interaction during online learning is an important and a key for being a successful online teacher.
· Promote an active learning environment
· Create and maintain an environment where students can actively participate cooperatively and independently
· Conduct discussions at the end of every topic completion
· Start an online discussion thread
· Use suitable and multiple strategies to engage students.
Teaching a subject is not just about mere knowledge of the subject but also communicating the subject or the topic effectively to the students. Different teachers have different approaches to teaching effectively, but a few sets of characteristics make a teacher teach very efficiently. The finest teachers exhibit enthusiasm and excitement not only for the subject they teach but also show students a direction to reach the set goals and improve themselves as an individual. Excellent and effective teachers are skilled in teaching competencies like understanding, managing the classroom, engaging class and interactive learning environment. Most significantly, teachers must be proficient in a multilayered social skill set, leading to improved learning. Better teacher-student relations encourage improved academic performance and healthy classroom situations by minimizing unruly student behaviour.