Although most professions require skills which are obtained during education or special training, when it comes to teachers, it is an ongoing learning and evolving process. Educators are obliged to have inspirational traits in order to provoke interest in learning. So what comprises an inspirational teacher?
Inspiration is a quality within the soul waiting to ensue. An educator who possesses such an attribute is the one who brings it out in the students. It is his/her enthusiasm about what is being taught; the information relayed and the manner in which it is done. A teacher who bears inspiration does not sit behind the desk reading from a book. This teacher is up and about attending to all the students while providing individual attention at the same time. This teacher is always looking for ways to broaden students’ horizons through any means he/she can use (slides, computers, books, trips) on the subject they teach and branches of that subject.
It is the teacher’s interest in the individual student that motivates the youngsters even more. The educator’s attention to the student, especially when he/she accomplishes a task, goes a long way. Creating positive feelings in the student delivers not only impetus in that individual, but a future citizen who can view himself and his surroundings in a more positive light. This is especially true for those that seem to be constant failures, also known as at-risk students.
*Are inspired by their students
Contrary to old beliefs, showing how enthusiastic one is with what a learner can accomplish or even better admitting to learning from that student is not a sign of weakness. It is a sign of appreciation, honesty and humility. It is telling that individual that he/she really can do what education meant him/her to and that the educator is there to spur that person on.
*Inspirational teachers are learners themselves
Nothing can be appreciated more than an educator who is simultaneously a student. The ancient peoples had long ago realized that learning is ongoing. Although this had been neglected in the past, nowadays, due to information technology, it is attested to by everyone. Today, children are practically born with a computer mouse in their hands; how then can anyone demand those children to fall to an inferior method or feature of learning? It is, thus, the teacher’s obligation to keep up with the times.
Georges Mauco, a French psychologist and educator, points out in his book ‘Psychanalyse et Education’ that a research conducted on the subject, The Ideal Teacher, revealed that students 13-15 years of age viewed the ideal teacher as follows:
An Ideal Teacher:
1- Is Understanding
2- Is clear, interesting, alive (in other words inspirational)
3- Is pleasant
4- Is fair, unbiased
5- Is respected without needing to punish his/her students
6- Is conscientious and loves his/her profession.
In the epilogue of his book, Mr. Mauco states that the only real obstacle educators must overcome is the fear of the truth of their true personalities. The realization of who one really is, and whether what one is doing truly expresses the inner self, is the most courageous life-forming step. It is the search for this truth that ought to spur the educator on to help his/her students discover and recognize their own desires and dreams and eventually realize them.