You might say that teaching preschool is a calling. Sure, a preschool teacher needs to study, learn, and practice approaches and methods, but great preschool teachers have some inherent qualities that make them suited for the job — and suited to love the job!
Great preschool teachers not only teach the ABCs and 123s, they also nurture, encourage, and love their students. They give their students a foundation for a lifetime of learning, confidence, and growth.
Look for these seven qualities of a great preschool teacher when you’re looking for a preschool in Draper, Utah.
Just like you want your doctor to have a passion for learning everything there is to know about their specialty, or for your hairdresser to have a passion for keeping up on the latest trends, or the chef at your favorite restaurant to have a passion for blending flavors, it’s important that a preschool teacher has a passion for early childhood education — and for making a difference in young children’s lives.
A passion for helping young children thrive and succeed drives preschool teachers to stay on top of the latest research, to be creative in finding solutions, and to care about each individual student.
The job of a preschool teacher can be demanding — runny noses need to be wiped, fights need to be resolved, and tears need to be calmed on the daily. If a preschool teacher has passion for what she does — and the difference she knows she’s making — she can muscle through the tough parts to continue to provide an enriching environment and education.
Children often mirror the emotions of the adults in their lives, and an enthusiastic preschool teacher can keep a class or individual on course in the face of obstacles or setbacks. Not only that, enthusiasm makes the learning environment fun, which encourages children to eagerly soak up knowledge and let their curiosity guide them.
Preschool children have short attention spans and can be quick to sudden mood changes. Add in the fact that every child develops at a different rate, and you have a bubbling stew of potential frustrations that would make most people lose their cool. But a preschool teacher must have vast stores of patience so that the highs and lows of the day don’t distract from the end goal. Children benefit from patience, knowing they can make mistakes and still be cared for.
Preschool teachers need to communicate effectively with small children, helping them understand new concepts in reading, manners, self-control, and more. Not only that, they need to communicate with parents to let them know what’s going on in the classroom and to resolve any conflicts. They also need to communicate with team teachers about lesson plans, the progress of individual students, and more so that each student can receive a quality education.
It’s supposed to be the day that the children head outside with magnifying glasses to look for and observe insects… only it’s raining cats and dogs. No matter! A great preschool teacher can roll with setbacks, using an alternative activity that still teaches the necessary concepts.
A great preschool teacher has empathy for her students and their families. She is worried when a child struggles, and she extends compassion to help the child get through their difficulties. She is emotionally available to her students and works to find solutions for problems of all kinds — from difficulty sharing a toy to a struggle with understanding the concept of letters.
Most importantly, a preschool teacher needs to love her students — and show it. When a child knows he is loved, he feels safe and confident. Trying new things isn’t so scary, and making mistakes becomes part of the process of learning — not something to be ashamed about. A great preschool teacher shows love to all her students.