What it takes to be a good teacher

"Good teaching can mean different things to different people. It's part science, part art. The art part is difficult to delineate, but you need to be authentic. I'm fairly quiet and low-key. Some teachers are more bubbly, and that's fine too. But you need to be who you are. The children want to know that you're real with them.

"Children need to learn to be good community members. We have to give them a sense of themselves in the larger world.

"You have to be patient, love kids, and be a good student of people.

"It takes more intelligence than people often credit. You need to be a lifelong learner, to read and think and keep up on things.

"You have to be enthusiastic about the things you're teaching. I love the opera, poetry, science, animals, literature. Sometimes I start with something I'm interested in and then a piece of it clicks with them.

"It's a human interaction. You as the adult - who and what you are - determines how you will teach. You have to be well-centered, and basically feel pretty good about yourself.

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