What makes a great teacher? Part 2

Teaching is a difficult job which requires a range of skills and extensive knowledge. In the second post about what makes a great teacher, we look at some of the characteristics which make teachers successful in classrooms today.

Teaching is a difficult job which requires a range of skills and extensive knowledge. In the second post about what makes a great teacher, we look at some of the characteristics which make teachers successful in classrooms today.

A great teacher…sets an example

photo of a teacher with a globe

Great teachers are passionate learners who set an example to their students. Whether it’s keeping up-to-date on the latest curriculum information, exploring new educational methods, or developing your subject knowledge, great teachers keep on learning.

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A great teacher… sets high expectations

photo of young girl in a classroom

Working with a range of abilities in the classroom can be tricky when it comes to assessments. Great teachers set high expectations for all, making sure all students are provided with equal opportunities to learn, develop and succeed. Why not suggest online courses to help your students prepare for exams? Or design assessment instruments to measure student outcomes?

Help students succeed in EPQs
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Design assessments to measure student outcomes
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A great teacher… is supportive

photo of a teacher in a classroom

Teaching goes beyond just the classroom: it extends to the world all around us. Great teachers understand that youth social activities can help others and the environment, improve communities and shape character and confidence in young people.

Help young people build character and confidence
Join the course Building Character through Youth Social Action

A great teacher is…emotionally intelligent

teacher meditating

Mental health issues are on the rise in children and teenagers, with 1 in 10 young people now experiencing conditions such as anxiety, depression or conduct disorder (Mental Health Foundation). A great teacher is able to manage their own emotions in the classroom and understand the emotions of others. Learn mindfulness techniques and share them with your students, or find out about psychological therapies such as CBT.

Understand emotions, behaviours and thinking patterns:
Join the course Psychology and Mental Health: Beyond Nature and Nurture

Explore anxiety, depression and CBT:
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Learn mindfulness techniques:
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A great teacher…fights for equality

photo of children holding hands

All over the world groups of young people are marginalised from educational opportunities due to poverty, disability and other social issues. Great teachers break down these social barriers in the classroom; tailoring teaching methods to suit a wide range of individual needs and creating a positive learning experience for all.

Break down barriers in the classroom
Join the course The Right to Education: Breaking Down the Barriers

Understand the UN’s guidelines on alternative care
Join the course Getting Care Right for All Children

Explore inclusive learning environments
Join the course Inclusive learning and teaching environments

Missed part part one of this post? Read it now

Not found a course for you? See all our teaching courses

P.s. what do you think makes a great teacher? Let us know in the comments.

Category Teaching

Comments (23)


  • Abdullateef Abdulkareem

    A great teacher strengthens both the weak and strong students

  • Bright

    A great teacher understands the needs of his/her students.

  • Sudipto

    A great teacher can make any difficult topic interesting and enjoyable to the learners.

  • Sheerin Zulfiqar

    Great teacher know how to motivate students for better life

  • Sheerin Zulfiqar

    Best teacher know how to give students motivation for future learning

  • Sheerin Zulfiqar

    Teacher is a best model in any aspects

  • Sowbhagyam

    Patience and persistence pays their lives

  • Nooshin

    A teacher is the best model in many aspects like being a motivator facilitator etc……..

  • odochi oluchi

    Leave a comment…A teacher is a role model , a motivator an encourger.

  • aisulu

    Great teacher not only knows her subject and in my point of view great teacher is who can bring – up future generation well

    • Teresa Wang

      Absolutely yes!

  • Maria

    A geat teacher promotes learners autonomy.

  • tamila

    great teacher know how to give students motivation for future learning

    • Teresa Wang

      That’s ture. Motivation is important to all aspects of a person’s life.

  • Liubov Sharkun

    A great teacher knows his/her subject well and knows how to give this knowledge to others.

  • Khaing Thida

    I think that a great teacher can creat positive learning environment & give opportunities for the learners to learn. A great teacher can do the learners to be curious for something themselves.

  • Patrick Miniti

    I want to become a great teacher too, thank you for the opportunity and I am looking at other opportunities to achieve this. I hope I can get a scholarship to do my masters physical education and teaching.

    • Teresa Wang

      If you are a teacher, you’ve already a lucky person. To be a great teacher, one need to put tremendous efforts. A person I knew once said, you need to work very very hard to make the work looks a little bit easier to other person. I also agree to the 10,000 hours principle. To start, enough time is very important.

  • Chandrima

    A great teacher is a lifelong learner who teaches her students to learn how to learn.

    • Teresa Wang

      That’s very true.
      If students know how to learn effectively, teaching will be much more effective.

      • Teresa Wang

        Efficient/useful method/tools are very important.

  • Elena

    A great teacher can change the world around her(him) being a good example.

    • Teresa Wang

      It’s difficult to change other people, sometimes it is impossible. But great teachers do influence people around them.