A mother playing “patty cake” and “peek-a-boo” with her baby is a teacher. She is teaching hand-eye coordination and social interaction. However, she has no history of earning credentials in education. She is teaching out of love for her child and is rewarded with the child’s happy giggles and wanting to play these “games”.
A high school student forms a study group with his peers for a course that has a reputation of being difficult. While this particular subject matter has come fairly easily to him, he knows that participating in a study group will only enhance his knowledge. He instinctually understands that sharing his knowledge and “teaching” other students will be reciprocated in his learning material he did not know or understand from his peers.
A geriatric patient in a nursing home regales his nurses with wonderful stories of his youth. His stories are full of history and wisdom that only comes from living to an advanced age. His reward comes from the company of his caretakers wanting to spend time with him.
What do these three individuals have in common? None have a history of earning credentials in education. Yet, they are all teachers. Moreover, they are naturally born teachers. Is everyone, then, a natural born teacher? The commonality for these three vastly different “teachers” is their love of sharing their knowledge and their love of learning. However, everyone is not gifted with being a naturally born teacher.
People who are born teachers have an innate love of sharing knowledge in a way that is not only receptive to the “student” but inspires the student to gather additional facts, to study and to learn with enthusiasm. People who are teachers have, themselves, a love for learning, are great motivators, and excel in critical thinking skills, thus learning how to “think outside the box”. They have integrity, and an infectious enthusiasm. They are non-judgmental and willing to listen to others’ points of views that may differ vastly from their own views.
Naturally born teachers have the best communications skills. First and foremost, they are great listeners. Secondly, they share their knowledge in a way that makes their students eager to learn. These teachers often become professional educators who are wildly popular among the student body.
The hallmark of naturally born teachers is that will tell you that they learn as much from their students as their students learn from them. A university professor has the same student for two consecutive semesters for two different courses. The student never missed a class and always sat on the front row. This student is intelligent, motivated, shares supplemental material with classmates, and, most importantly is moral and ethical. After the final exam at the end of the second semester, the student approaches the professor. The professor congratulates her for another stellar performance and the student replied, “Thank you. I have learned so much from your courses. I have been homeless for the past year and living in shelters and cars. It is so important to me to earn your respect and my good grade.” The professor is stunned and then tears come to his eyes. He tells the student, “Thank you for sharing this with me. While I have taught you subject matter needed for your major, you have taught me a far more valuable lesson of life. You are a truly inspirational person.”
In conclusion, there are individuals born with the gift of being a naturally born teacher. They have a true love of learning and love sharing their knowledge with other individuals. They have excellent communication skills in that they are wonderful listeners and can communicate their knowledge with enthusiasm and joy. This, in turn, causes the recipients of their communication skills and knowledge eager and motivated to learn.