What is heart? Passion, desire, and drive combined to form an intense intrinsic motivation to act , as this is the foremost quality of a good teacher

Based on certain professional development sessions, created numerous growth plans, and counseled teachers in coaching sessions, it became apparent that the heart of a teacher is what matters—everything else can be taught. For some reason— maybe the seemingly short workday, frequent vacations, or job stability—professionals flock to the field of education. These newcomers to teaching are from all professions such as accounting, business, engineering, and some are even new graduates from college. Not all of these transitions are willing; some are desperate in light of harsh economic times and they feel, “Since I have a degree, I can teach”.

Unfortunately, the salary of a teacher hardly makes the job worth it. Therefore, in the schools we see apathy, burnout, and despair in teachers who really did not want to be in the classroom in the first place. Yet, we are stuck with them. Despite advanced degrees and certifications, no amount of professional development and coaching could make these teachers better because their heart is not in it, though they keep teaching year after year.

On the other hand, take a new teacher, one who has always wanted to help children and teach, yet has little or no experience and may not even be certified. Who would you rather on campus? Many would choose the veteran who has experience, but at what cost? In this age of society, education is continually changing, evolving, moving steadily towards putting (and keeping) the student first, and campuses need teachers who are willing to do the same, teachers with heart.

This “heart” that good teachers possess moves them to continually put students first. This naturally leads these teachers to attend whatever professional developments, listen to whatever advice, and employ whatever strategies necessary for the benefit of their students. This motivation to adapt and evolve cannot be taught and does not automatically accompany a certificate of certification.

Teachers who possess heart take heed to counsel and advice. They embrace new teaching models, such as co-teaching and technology in the classroom. They self-evaluate, study, research, observe, and adjust, all without prodding from department heads and administration. They are thirsty for information and seek to not only hone their skills, but to share them with others. Students cannot help but benefit from these teachers who are open, resourceful, and ready to learn.


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