11 Characteristics of Highly Effective Teachers

I was in the process of generating my own list when a teaching colleague forwarded me an article from The Atlantic that seconded most of my observations, but verified by data collected by Teach for America (a nonprofit that recruits college graduates to spend two years teaching in low-income schools) over the past 20 years.  So here's the list, and also a link to the article:
  1. They figure out what the students need to learn and then plan backwards from there
  2. They don't waste time - every activity purposely and deliberately moves students towards the desired goal
  3. They are organized and prepared (relevant, valid materials; smooth transitions)
  4. They constantly revise their teaching methods to improve effectiveness
  5. They set high expectations for students (and their families)
  6. They constantly assess to ensure that students are genuinely learning
  7. They establish a consistent classroom routine and stick to it
  8. They use engaging materials and active learning techniques
  9. They employ research-validated instructional techniques, such as I do, we do, you do (teacher modeling -> guided practice --> independent practice)
  10. They model enthusiasm for the subject they are teaching
  11. They create a classroom environment in which students feel safe, respected, and confident

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