Effective teaching is all about passing knowledge through an education system, and teachers are the tools that disseminate that knowledge to the intended audience – the students – through the teaching process.
Unfortunately, most teachers lack the basic teaching skills. Professors often use complex materials to teach their students, create a scary environment for their students, making the learners uncomfortable to understand what is being taught in the classroom environment. The result is chaotic teaching and learning.
To remedy this, I have outlined five steps for effective teaching. Here are they:
1. Study your students
The first step process for teaching effectively is to study your students. Understand their motives, what inspires them, their passion, and their pain points and or desires. This will help you not only to transfer knowledge to them, but also to mold their character.
When you know your students better, it’s easier for you to relate with them better, to know what kinds of stories better hook them, so that you glued them to your materials. In addition, when you understand them, you can easily get them to glued to listen to you attentively and better understand your lecturers.
2. Create a safe environment
Most students who don’t want to contribute in the class are doing so because they are not comfortable with the classroom their teachers create.
Maybe the professor is too harsh. Maybe the professor is known for embarrassing students in front of their peers. Maybe the classroom is not structured in a way that will make the students interact comfortably with their mates.
This will make the teaching–learning ineffective and scary, and it’s your responsibility as a teacher to make it fun and comfortable. Because when you create a safe environment the students will feel happy and relaxed, and they will contribute and help you achieve your learning objectives.
3. Exude passion
Passion is important in life, in business, and in teaching and learning. When you’re passionate, you’ll deliver lessons with energy and enthusiasm and love. And your passion will fly above you and reach the students you are teaching.
Before you go to class, master your materials. Remember, you can’t be passionate if you don’t know your subject matter well enough. In fact, you’ll lose confidence and hate the process if you are not familiar with your subject.
So know what you’ll teach in the class. Love the teaching process. Be well versed in your subject matter. So that you’ll inculcate knowledge with high energy, high spirit, and high enthusiasm to your students.
4. Make it simple
Effective teaching is all about simplicity. You may be a doctor or a professor in your own field. But it won’t do you any good to teach your students using big vocabularies and technical terms. If you do so, your students will get confused rather than understanding the subject matter.
Just be simple. No matter how complex your material is, you have to break down the technical aspects into simpler versions – so simple your students will comprehend. That means, bringing the materials and discusses down to your student’s level because it’s not about you. It’s about your students.
5. Make it clear
Clarity is about making things readily apparent to the mind. And one of the most important attributes of a great teacher is to make complex ideas clearer to their students. That means using clear-cut examples to communicate difficult concepts, employing different strategies to enhance students comprehension whenever they listen to your lectures.
According to Gary Grates, the executive director of internal communications for General Motors, the essence of teaching — and learning — is communication. “The biggest issue that leaders face is whether people understand them,” says Grates. “Whether you’re talking about Wall Street, partners, customers, or employees, people must understand the organization’s story — where it’s headed, why you are making these changes, how you work, and how you think. Otherwise, you’re going to lose valuation, sales, new opportunities, or employees. That’s why teaching is important.”