Every teacher wants to have a successful and enjoyable classroom. But sometimes, well-intentioned educators make choices that aren’t beneficial for their students or the learning environment.
The Worst Things Teachers Do
Teachers have huge responsibilities in leading the next generation, and sometimes the daily stressors get the better of them.
Here are 13 malpractices teachers may do that create a hostile environment.
1. Not Engaging With Students
When a teacher isn’t interacting with their students, it can cause apathy and disinterest in the lesson. Asking thoughtful questions, encouraging positive dialogue, and providing opportunities for student feedback are all important ways to ensure an interactive learning environment.
2. Showing Favoritism
A teacher should treat all students equally and fairly, without favoring one student over another. Making a student feel like they are not respected or favored can create an atmosphere of resentment and distrust in the classroom.
3. Not Responding to Questions
Being unable to answer a question in class can be frustrating for both the student and the teacher. However, it is important for a teacher to take the time to investigate possible answers and provide feedback to help the student learn.
4. Not Providing Feedback
A good teacher should provide frequent feedback to their students on their performance and progress in class. Without this feedback, it can be difficult for students to measure their own progress, leading to frustration and confusion.
5. Not Setting Boundaries
A teacher should set clear expectations and rules in the classroom to create a safe and productive learning environment. Without these boundaries, it can be difficult for students to focus on their studies, which may result in disruptive behavior from some students.
6. Not Being Prepared
A teacher needs to be well-prepared for each class, with lesson plans and materials ready to go. If a teacher is not adequately prepared, it can lead to confusion in the classroom and may prevent students from learning as much as they can. If a teacher doesn’t challenge their students, they may get bored and not learn as much as they could have otherwise.
7. Shaming Students
A teacher should never humiliate a student in front of the class, as this can create a hostile environment and may cause students to lose confidence in their abilities. Disrespecting students can profoundly impact their mental health and well-being.
8. Not Adapting to Different Learning Styles
Every student has different needs when it comes to learning. It is important for teachers to recognize this and adjust their approach accordingly, or else some students may not be able to comprehend the material fully.
9. Not Being Available for Extra Help
Some students require more help than others, and it is important for a teacher to make themselves available for extra assistance outside of class. Without this help, some students may not be able to keep up with their classmates.
10. Not Encouraging Creative Thinking
A teacher should provide opportunities for their students to think outside the box and explore new ideas. Without this encouragement, students may not be able to realize their full potential.
11. Being Unapproachable
A good teacher creates an open and inviting atmosphere in the classroom where students feel comfortable asking questions, making mistakes, and seeking help. Without this openness, it can be difficult for teachers to build a rapport with their students.
12. Yelling at Students
Yelling or raising one’s voice in the classroom is rarely productive and can be extremely intimidating for students. A teacher should use other methods to get their point across, such as positive reinforcement.
13. Gossip or Complaints About Other Teachers
A teacher should never discuss or disclose another teacher’s personal or professional life in front of the class. This can create an atmosphere of unprofessionalism and lead to distrust among students.
14. Not Admitting To Mistakes
Everyone gets things wrong; it’s only human. Nobody gets things right 100% of the time.
Many teachers will get embarrassed and try to cover up their mistakes. Students may notice and begin to emulate this behavior.
A much better approach would be to thank the students when they point out the mistakes or laugh it off. At the end of the day, school is all about learning, which doesn’t come without a few errors here and there.
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This post, called The 13 Worst Things a Teacher Can Do, was syndicated and produced by TPR Teaching.
Caitriona Maria is an education writer and founder of TPR Teaching, crafting inspiring pieces that promote the importance of developing new skills. For 7 years, she has been committed to providing students with the best learning opportunities possible, both domestically and abroad. Dedicated to unlocking students' potential, Caitriona has taught English in several countries and continues to explore new cultures through her travels.