Good Teachers

Rachel Reinke, Editor

   Being a good teacher is entirely subjective, who students might deem a “good teacher” is oftentimes very different to what teachers themselves deem ‘good’, another layer is that of time, how long has one been a teacher, or what level is the student at?

    Many students have differing opinions of what makes teachers “good”, and one major difference tends to come with what grade a student is in.  Senior Emma Becker is one example of that.

   “What I think makes a good teacher is someone that lifts up their students. Someone who is easily approachable and makes you feel safe walking into class”, said Becker.

      Many students vent about what teachers do wrong but no one ever asks, ‘How could they change their methods to benefit you?’

   Becker said, “I think it helps us learn when the teacher makes a connection with their students even if it’s just small. Something that helps them feel like they can ask for help without fear of being judged.”

   Comparatively, someone with less experience in a higher level of schooling may have different expectations.

   Sophomore Elijah Proulx said, “A good teacher is one that understands school is hard and helps you through it and expects realistic and accurate results.”

   Proulx said on how teachers could improve is, “focusing more on the full learning process instead of forcing grading as our only option for success.”

   A teacher’s job is to teach the next generation to not only understand topics like math, science, or history, but to also form them into critical thinkers, something new history teacher Jeanette Peplinski sees as a major part of her duty.

   “I believe it’s extremely important to prepare my students to be mindful, responsible global citizens. So, I work to teach them their history and include the good and the bad”, said Ms.Peplinski.

    Teachers and students obviously have differing opinions of what a ‘good teacher’ is, and even then the perceptions teachers get from students often varies by how long a teacher has been teaching.  

   “I think students believe a good teacher should be able to put themselves in the students’ shoes and try to understand that they have a lot going on in their lives as well. Whether that be sports, clubs, work, etc”, said Ms.Peplinski.

   Just like students in different grades, how much experience a teacher has can affect their perception of what teaching is meant to look like, veteran teachers like English teacher Dawn Whitsett.

   “I think that having a connection with students and building rapport is even more important than being strong in content area knowledge.Teaching doesn’t always go as planned and you can’t script every second (nor should you), so being buoyant allows for creativity and having a sense of humor about everything is helpful”, said Mrs.Whitsett.

   On how students may perceive a ‘good teacher’ Mrs.Whitsett said, “I think students want someone who believes in them and who will support them even when the going gets hard. I think students want to be seen and respected as individuals and as the young adults that they are. I think that students want a teacher that they can trust- both to teach them the content and to make positive decisions.”