Great teachers are leaders. They create inspiring learning environments in which they can guide students through their most formative years.
By developing their leadership skills, teachers can become teacher-leaders, individuals who inspire students and empower them to reach their potential. Teacher-leaders also often have the expertise and skills to mentor other teachers and manage school curriculums.
So, how can you become a teacher-leader?
How to Become a Teacher-Leader
A master’s degree in education can help teachers enhance their teacher leadership skills. By taking one of University of Phoenix’s Master of Arts in Education degrees, you can:
- Learn how to support student learning and progress students’ academic goals
- Gain a solid understanding of how education works at each level
- Prepare for leadership roles by learning how education works in communities
Meanwhile, you’ll practice plenty of soft skills to shape your ability as a teacher-leader.
Four Important Skills for a Teacher-Leader
These are the four top skills that University of Phoenix encourages teachers to practice so they can become effective teacher-leaders.
Given that communication is essential to the giving and receiving of constructive, valuable feedback, communication is a core skill for teacher-leaders. Good communicators can listen to and connect with students, not to mention parents and colleagues.
New teachers can practice their communication skills by taking communication courses. These courses can help teachers learn how to speak clearly and concisely and convey information about students’ needs or performance issues.
2. The Ability to Motivate Others
Teacher-leaders must motivate their students to achieve their best and inspire them to work toward their goals. But these individuals shouldn’t only inspire students; they should inspire their peers, such as other teachers and administrators, too.
Aspiring teacher-leaders can produce a teaching philosophy statement to help them identify and communicate their beliefs about how they can teach and inspire students. The statement may detail specific learning methods or techniques they would like students to use.
This statement can also remind teachers why they chose the teaching profession and what they hope to achieve through teaching. They should update this statement as they gain classroom and industry experience.
The education space is ever-evolving, and teacher-leaders must be able to adapt and change with the times. A flexible teacher-leader can stay abreast of industry changes and meet student needs whenever these arise. They must be comfortable handling different situations, such as working with a variety of people and taking on new responsibilities.
To practice adaptability, teachers can:
- Take care of their mental and physical health so they’re always in a strong position to adapt to change
- Make sure they have enough time in their schedule for meetings, projects and other responsibilities
- Check what resources are available to help them with their growing responsibilities such as leveraging technologies that can help with teaching or scheduling
- Contact mentors for guidance on how to develop teacher-leadership skills
Trustworthiness is a key attribute of an effective teacher-leader. When a teacher develops trusting relationships with students, these students are more likely to look up to their teacher and follow their teacher’s instructions. To develop trusting relationships, teachers can promote honesty, uphold ethical approaches and treat everyone with respect.
University of Phoenix’s Education Degrees
Individuals who would like to pursue a teacher-leadership career can develop their skills and knowledge by undertaking one of three online master’s degrees at University of Phoenix.
1. Master of Arts in Education/Curriculum and Instruction
Teachers who undertake the Master of Arts in Education/Curriculum and Instruction can prepare to become effective leaders in schools.
In this degree program, teachers learn how to use curriculum research to implement the best classroom practices, develop curriculum assessment skills,adopt technologies to enhance lesson plans,implement coaching strategies that can positively impact learning outcomes and understand ethical, social and political issues in education.
2. Master of Arts in Education/Elementary Teacher Education
Teachers who pursue the Master of Arts in Education/Elementary Teacher Education must have a BA degree in a discipline other than education before they can hone their teaching skills.
They also learn how to plan lessons and learn skills surrounding classroom management, child development, reflective teaching practice, professionalism, leadership, learning strategies, innovation and differentiated learning.
Teachers can complete this course in approximately 22 months.
3. Master of Arts in Education/Secondary Teacher Education
Teachers who enroll in the Master of Arts in Education/Secondary Teacher Education can prepare for teacher licensure and improve their confidence in teaching single subjects.
They will also learn skills associated with lesson planning, classroom management, technology integration, differentiated instruction, professionalism, leadership, innovation, learning strategies and cultural responsiveness.
Teachers can complete this course in around 19 months.
About University of Phoenix
University of Phoenix furthers the educational goals of adult and nontraditional learners and guides students as they navigate career options by selecting the degree programs that best suit their interests. These degree programs correspond with numerous career paths including in cybersecurity, nursing and business. University of Phoenix also provides flexible start dates, online classes and numerous scholarship opportunities for its expansive suite of programs so that anyone can earn the degree they need. Additionally, University of Phoenix offers a Career Services for Life® commitment for active students and graduates. This commitment provides the resources needed to be prepared when entering the workforce for no additional charge: career guidance, resume and interview support, and education and networking opportunities. Learn more at www.phoenix.edu.