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Teaching profession

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The teacher as a person cannot be detached from the teacher as a professional. You are this person. Before you become a professional, you must possess and develop characteristics which are attuned to the teaching profession. In other words, aptitude towards teaching is a significant factor to one’s success as teacher. A good teacher is a humane person looked up to and highly regarded by others. Like you and me, a teacher is a breathing, feeling and loving person with inborn qualities as well as acquired traits. The hereditary traits are nurtured by the environment and the training provided by home, school and community. However, if you wish to become a great teacher, you must possess character traits which are compatible with the teaching profession. Some of these outstanding traits include being caring, compassionate, objective, fair, reflective, and above all intellectually superior. Personal Attributes of Good Teachers

1. Intelligence
Of course everybody has intelligence, be it high, average or low. Perhaps, teachers must develop one of Howard Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences. Good teachers are those who possess average to high intelligence. The better teachers are those with high intelligence quotient (IQ) and must exhibit one or more of the multiple intelligences identified by Gardner.

Being intelligent means that one has foresight, a high level of understanding and mental capacity and a lot of common sense.

2. Emotional Stability
Aside from having a high intelligence quotient (IQ), a person who will make a good teacher must also have high emotional quotient (EQ). Are you easily upset by petty things? Do you worry a lot? Do you find difficulty in adjusting to new situations? Do you panic when pressured? If your answers to the above questions are NO, then, you must be calm and composed, and sure of yourself. You must be cheerful and optimistic, self-controlled, patient and level headed. You will make a good teacher!

3. Resourcefulness

A resourceful person is one who is imaginative, creative and makes original products. He or she can easily find ways to solve a problem by making do with what is at hand, and can stimulate others to make use of available materials, time and resources. The words “inadequate” and “lacking” are never in this person’s vocabulary. He or she can always be depended upon in times of difficulty and hardship and can make big things happen using limited resources.

4. Considerateness and Compassion
A person who is kind, friendly, courteous, helpful, thoughtful and tolerant is liked by many. This is the person who looks beyond oneself and is aware that no one is an island. This person feels what others feel. He/She is patient, polite, good-natured and tactful in his/her dealings.

5. Buoyancy

A buoyant person survives difficulties, knows how to balance life amidst adversities and always looks at the positive side of life. This person has high interpersonal intelligence and a good sense of humor; is cheerful and very popular. Alert, carefree and gregarious, such a person loves the company of other people. Indeed, this person makes a good teacher!

6. Objectiveness

An objective person does not make judgment unless sufficient evidence is presented. This person puts aside personal considerations in the search for truth, constantly looks for explanations and gives equal chance for all to be heard.

When confronted with a critical situation, do you always think that your suggestion is correct? Do you see other suggestions as different and inferior to yours? Do you find yourself giving extra favor to others who are close to you?

7. Self-Motivation and drive

Individuals who succeed in life and in their chosen career are those who are self-driven and self-motivated. They have the physical vigor to do their job. They never leave any assigned task unfinished and they perform at their best. They do their work without being supervised. They are goal-oriented and they seek various avenues to accomplish their goals. In contrast, some people are laid-back. They are externally motivated and are easily discouraged. They are slow in action and lack endurance. They lack a sense of urgency and need to be pushed all the time.

8.Dominance and self confidence

Do you believe in yourself and what you can do? Can you work alone by yourself without asking the help of others? Are you determined to accomplish what you set out to do? Are you decisive or do you waver in your decisions? Do you believe in the saying “no guts, no glory?”

A “yes” to these questions reveals that you have self-confidence and will make a good teacher. Some of the characteristics of a dominant and self-confident person include courage, decisiveness, determination, assertiveness, and self-reliance. Dominance may connote a negative meaning but some form of control tempered with compassion and consideration are necessary qualities of teachers in order for them to succeed. A self-confident person is intelligent, emotionally stable, resourceful, fair, enthusiastic and tolerant. He/She knows what he/she is doing.

9. Attractiveness and Pleasantness

Is your physical appearance important to you? Do you attract attention in a crowd or doesn’t anybody notice you? Attractiveness is very important because a teacher serves as the most important visual aid in the classroom. The person has to be neat, clean, charming and well-poised. The person has to carry himself/herself well and must be appropriately dressed from head to toe.

Some persons are attractive but not pleasant. When a teacher is attractive and pleasant, he or she gains the respect not only by students, peers, superiors, parents and the whole community.

10. Refinement

Good taste and social graces bespeak of a refined person. Refinement is not inborn but is cultivated and influenced by the people and the environment where one lives. It is greatly influenced by nurture rather than by nature. Refinement is manifested in your demeanor, actions, body language and words. The choice of clothes, words to use, actions to take are dictated by the upbringing and breeding of a person. People come from varied home backgrounds yet, there are standard behaviors acceptable in society which are usually learned at home and in school. Good deportment is one example.

11. Cooperativeness

“Unity in diversity” is a paradox. We are different from each other, yet we have to work together for the welfare of the learners. To be a good teacher, one has to be cooperative, friendly, generous, adaptive, flexible, and responsive, trustful and charitable. These are qualities of individuals who possess the innate value of cooperation. Cooperation does not make others dependent but rather empower others to become independent.

Cooperation is democracy in action. If you are cooperative, you are willing to share responsibilities as well as privileges.  Your success is everybody’s success. There is more giving than receiving. There is no “me” nor “you”, but “we”. If you have a sense of cooperation, you are a charitable and generous person, responsive to the needs of others. 12. Reliability and Dependability

Are you a person others can lean on for support? Are you honest and sincere in words and in action? Are you consistent in your actions and your responses? These are also positive characteristics which teachers should have. We need reliable and dependable teachers in our schools.

12. Reliability and Dependability

Read and find out if you too have these qualities. Being a new teacher is an advantage because you have the time to grow and develop in order to become a good teacher. As you read the descriptions, match them with the qualities mentioned by Barr. 1.Great teachers interact with the learners physically, mentally and emotionally. They teach not only with their mind but also with their heart. They are available to all students and communicate with them in an understandable manner. Like loving parents, these teachers are fair, respectful, and flexible and are not deterred by setbacks.

2. Great teachers allow students to ask questions. They have classroom rules and procedures which help students know what is expected of them and how they can help themselves. Good teachers prepare students to become valuable assets in the community.

3. Great teachers respect all students and encourage good performance by bringing out the best in each one. They prepare for their classes and use varied support materials to make the lesson interesting.

4. Great teachers are those who discipline themselves before anyone else. They have self-control and regulation. They behave appropriately in every situation. They understand a child’s problem and are ready to help anytime. They express different points of view clearly.

The Professional Regulatory Commission (PRC) has listed teaching as a profession hence, teachers are professionals. To be a professional, one has to satisfy the following requisites. 1. Must have passed the licensure examination for the profession. In the case of teachers, it is the Licensure Examination for Teachers (LET). 2. Must be a member of an Accredited Professional Organization (APO). For teachers, this is the National Organization of Professional Teachers (NOPT) or earlier known as the Philippine Association for Teacher Education (PAFTE). 3. Must continuously grow in the profession by attending or participating in professional development activities like seminars, workshops, conferences and other activities that will enhance the skills and knowledge of the professional. 4. Must abide by the code of ethics for the profession.

In order to be included in the list of professional teachers, you should comply with all the requirements stated. To be a professional requires a lot of hard work, dedication and faithfulness to the ethical values of the profession. To be called a professional teacher is a right, a privilege and at the same time a distinction.

Professional Qualities of a Teacher
1. A professional teacher must have a deep understanding of the theoretical knowledge about learning and human behavior.
2. A professional teacher demonstrates attitudes that foster learning and genuine human relationship.
3. A professional teacher must have a mastery of the subject matter.
4. A professional teacher must possess competencies in the use of teaching skills that facilitate student learning.
5. Professional teachers must have personal practical knowledge, too.

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