A teacher or school teacher is someone who gives education to students and other learners. The primary role of such a teacher is usually formal and continuing, carried out either in a school or other public place of learning. However, in some countries, an individual who wants to be a teacher has to first obtain specific professional credentials or qualifications from a particular college or university. Teachers are also required to undergo certain training and examinations annually.
Some other posts or positions in the education hierarchy are occupied by different kinds of teachers. For instance, there are art and design teachers, science teachers, health teachers, and so on. Art and design teachers teach art history, art, psychology, or composition to students; health teachers instruct students about basic nursing practices; science teachers instruct students about physical science, mathematics, and other relevant subjects; and teachers in the health field instruct students about diets, nutrition, and similar subjects. In general, the qualifications required for different kinds of teacher post vary depending on the subject one teaches.
The education policies of most schools or colleges lay down the guidelines or rules on the education credentials of teachers. Basic requirements that teachers must meet generally include completion of a master’s degree or a terminal degree, registration as a teacher with the National Educational Association or the American Academy of Teacher Registration or teacher certification, and having at least ten years of experience in teaching. However, some schools and colleges differ in terms of what constitutes a full-fledged teacher certification or licensing.
A good teacher, according to experts, is one who can bring about a student’s overall development through effective teaching. This can only be achieved if the teacher possesses genuine concern for the learning of his or her students and is able to instill in them a sense of respect for people, for life, and for the subject matter they will be teaching. Most schools today require teachers to acquire a minimum number of years of experience in the subject matter they teach, although licensure is not required by most states.
It is also important for good teachers to do a bit of teacher research in order to improve their skills in their particular subject area. A teacher’s research can be in the form of journaling, visiting schools and conferences, spending time in the classrooms of colleagues in the same subject area, reading a variety of books on the subject, enrolling in teacher conferences and workshops, and using the Internet to locate possible resources for teaching. All these techniques help teachers become better prepared for the lessons that they have to teach and to make their classroom a more inspiring, interesting, and inspiring space for students to learn and grow.
Aside from their efforts in the classroom, good teachers must be knowledgeable in a host of issues pertaining to teaching. They should have sound scientific knowledge that goes beyond basic textbook knowledge. Good teachers must be interested and active participants in school politics, as well. The politics of education is an intricate arena, and teachers need all the tools at their disposal to facilitate this arena of discussion, debate, compromise, and fact-finding.