What makes an outstanding teacher? #KTChat

Thank you to those who joined us on Wednesday 4th November for our #OutstandingTeacher Twitter Chat. We had current Headteachers, James Tibbles and Graham Chisnell, join us as well as retired Headteacher, Julia Skinner, and other teaching professionals, together sharing their expertise. What a brilliant session it was! 

Below are the questions we asked during the chat and a summary of the fantastic contribution.

Question 1:

We discussed the five ingredients of an #OutstandingTeacher and the following were mentioned:

  • Being confident and having subject expertise
  • Having a passion for children’s learning and an understanding of the learning process
  • Having compassion, passion and energy whilst teaching
  • Having the ability to critically reflect a lesson to continually improve for the next one
  • Striking the right balance between teacher input and independent learning
  • Having prior experience as a Teaching Assistant so it is more effective managing TAs as a teacher

Following Graham’s interesting comment, “Outstanding” can be perceived as having a daunting prospect around it due to its involvement in the OFSTED framework. Replacing the word with “great” could reduce pressure for those that feel compelled to deliver “outstanding” results frequently.

In relation to question 1, Julia mentioned that the key is to recognise “Great” teaching when it is present and Graham agreed… 

This refers to positive reinforcement, “positively reinforcing the great”.

The following question was then posed:

Of course great teachers are present in a range of schools, not just “Outstanding” ones. For James and Graham, they conferred that some of the best teaching they’d seen were mainly in challenging schools that were going through Special Measures.

Interestingly, Graham shared that some teachers are influenced into being a type of teacher that they think others want them to be, and not the teacher their children need; so ensure you recognise your children’s needs and respond well to help them learn as best they can.

Question 2: 

It appears that exceptional teaching does not require daily outstanding lessons as it is not always possible-teachers are human and have off days too! It is fundamental that a child’s learning journey is progressive and ensures opportunity to exercise their minds to achieve their very best.

But what do you think?

Question 3: