Qualities of an Effective Teacher

It is important for a professional teacher to have the qualities of an effective teacher. Peter Ramsay found in his study of five quality teachers in the Hamilton area the following qualities: have a high level of intelligence, pose problems for the children, possess good subject knowledge, have an array of teaching strategies and skills, and undergo professional development (NZEI, 1994).

It is difficult to imagine a successful teacher who has all the knowledge but lacks the skill to pass to the students the message; certainly, the class will be a failure. With regard to professional development, I think that this is something that teachers and professionals of
different areas should do constantly. It is amazing how new technology, new research, and new knowledge open our minds immensely.

The list of qualities of effective teachers seems endless for me. I am learning every day. I am becoming more conscious of the importance of all these qualities and would like to mention some new ones: Professionalism, a satisfying role, flexibility, open and frequent communication, self-awareness, mutual respect and acceptance, a team spirit, a willingness to share the spotlight, clearly defined roles, and evaluation (Gordon & Williams-Browne, 1996).

I will add to my list the following qualities mentioned by Peter Ramsay that I strongly agree are essential for an effective teacher: Warmth, compassion, patience, and perseverance.

Teachers are special. They need to be special. We see them as special human beings. We spend a large part of our lives with teachers. We link parents and teacher together. If we compare the list of qualities from Thompson, Greer, and Greer (n.d.), I will say that these qualities are the same qualities that we expect from our parents too. For this reason, I will say that teachers are almost second parents.

Qualities of effective  teachers Relating these qualities to parents
Fairness Treat all their children equally
Positive attitude Should be happy and optimistic
Preparedness Answer all my questions
Personal touch Talk to us with care and love
Sense of humour
Laugh and have an harmonious atmosphere at home
Creativity Make things exciting for us, using creativity
Willingness to admit mistakes Say sorry if they make a mistake
Forgiving Are not resentful of us
Respect Respect our emotions, our individualism, our desires
High expectations Always are the best ones
Compassion Caring parents are the best
Sense of belonging Sense of family

* Adapted from Thompson, Greer & Greer, n.d.

I hope you enjoy knowing all about the qualities of effective teachers as much as I do.


Gordon, A., & Williams-Browne, K. (1996). Beginnings & Beyond. New York: Delmar Publishers.


4 thoughts on “Qualities of an Effective Teacher

  1. definitely, in which every individual has its own differences so we could not just directly judge a certain individual wherein we do not know what type of family’s he/she belongs which causes his/her different;misbehaving, act indifferently, etc.

  2. Hi there how about a passion for children and teaching? Is that not one of the most fundamental aspect of teaching?’

    • Hi Maureen,
      You are absolutely right. I agreed with you, without passion for children (and teaching) it would be very hard to be an effective teacher. Thanks for reminds us the main point: Passion for children and teaching.

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