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Soft Skills for Strong Teachers

Teaching is a unique profession – one of the most challenging and demanding in terms of hard and soft skills. A teacher is expected to be an expert in her subject and also have the ability to thrive amidst the many stakeholders of the school ecosystem.

What are the important soft skills that would make one a star-teacher?

1. Leadership

Essential both inside and outside the classroom, this soft skill will distinguish the stars from the rest of the community. Given the varied responsibilities and interactions vested in the role, almost every situation demands leadership at a significant level. For starters, classroom management alone requires authenticity, cultural intelligence and trust to create a positive and pleasant learning environment.

2. Communication

Confidence, active listening and constructive feedback are the driving forces for effective communication in a classroom. All these were put to test for both the teacher and the student in the virtual classrooms during the pandemic. Meeting the students where they are can be the bedrock to evolve a successful communication strategy.

3. Teamwork

Teaching can be lonely at times. A teacher is always surrounded by people, but most of her work is done solo. Striving to be a team player herself will help alleviate some of the stress as well as make the journey fun and value adding.

4. Goal Setting & Time Management

The more subtle and hence, the less obvious aspect of this is how a teacher ‘connects’ with the kids. How well the kids relate to her, to each other and to what’s to be learned will determine the extent of success in achieving the learning objectives within the constraints of time, priority and participation.

5. Creativity

With machine learning and AI taking over most of the world’s work, creativity and innovation are assuming precedence over any other soft skill. Technology has taken over the repetitive aspect(s) of teaching through pre-recorded lectures, simulation videos, online tests etc. Infusing new or out-of-box thinking, identifying synergies and making hard things seem simple are some pointers to thrive on.

Positive, productive and persuasive style is key to the success of a teacher, and all these have to do with soft skills alone. Would you agree?