There are many teaching models available that guides teachers on teaching any subject effectively. With such teaching models, many have become effective teachers.
However, knowing how to teach any subject well does not make an impressive and an inspiring teacher that students will look forward to as a role model.
Recall from your memory all the teachers that left an impression in your life. They were excellent teachers. The teachers belonging to this category are the ones who practice what they teach.
Teachers who practice what they teach have certain unique characteristics that separate them from the rest of the teaching community.
What Makes an Exemplary Teacher?
As pointed out earlier, it is not enough to just know how to teach a subject that makes one an exemplary teacher. So, what are the traits required to become one? Many traits are required, but it must be remembered that merely reading these for theoretical knowledge will not help.
Any teacher must inculcate the following habits to become a true exemplary teacher that students would always want to follow. If any habit is missing or dormant within, then it must be brought out to the surface so that one develops into a real life character who leads by example.
 Motivating the Students At All Times
An exemplary teacher motivates the students to excel in a subject so much so that the student is ready for a presentation or to teach whatever he is learned so far in a session or a module. The teacher helps students set a long-term goal, short-term goals, and a daily checklist to ensure that there are no hindrances in the way of the student for the attainment of goals.
Teachers cannot fake motivation. Only those who are motivated in personal experience would ever want others to feel and stay motivated as well. Without motivation, students can never progress substantially.
 Commitment to Students’ Progress
Helping out students with goal setting schedule is not enough. Responsibility must be taken by the teacher to check the ongoing progress of the student and to see where the student is lacking in picking up the details of explanation.
Exemplary teachers spend ample time with the students outside the classroom as well to carefully listen to their daily activities in the concerned subject.
Sacrificing personal time in the engagement of students’ progress is not an easy trait to develop. However, once a teacher makes a commitment to catapult the student to first class, there’s nothing that can stop such a teacher from doing so.
 Highly Developed Cognitive Skills
Exemplary teachers believe that no matter how much time one spends on a subject, the knowledge gathered at the end of life might seem like a few pebbles collected in the seashore of knowledge. Inspirational teachers keep updating themselves with the latest conducted studies, research, findings, etc. regarding their subject and share it with the students.
Students automatically respect teachers who share the latest knowledge in the field with them and then present their point of view and encourage a healthy discussion.
A teacher, who regularly updates his students with newfound knowledge on his subject, teaches them to stay updated as well.
 Highly Developed Interpersonal Skills
Exemplary teachers are always up to date with the routines of the classroom. They take responsibility to handle more than a few modules at the same time. For example, the teacher can prepare a schedule to teach three modules together by concentrating 70% on the most important module, 30% on the next preferable and 10% on the next.
The teacher must manage the proper starting and ending times of each module.
If any disruption occurs at any point in the predefined schedule, then such teachers look at the problem objectively and methodically to find the most appropriate solution for the students.
 Active Listener
An exemplary teacher’s first impression is that he is a good listener. He listens actively to everything the student has to say whether it be a problem or an argument.
Teachers, who listen to students without interrupting or digressing them, attain a deep respect from the students. Students felt highly motivated and valued when they notice that the teacher has heard every word of theirs.
Usually, such teacher would reply to their students in a similar manner like: “Are you trying to say that if A is subtracted from…”, alternatively, “That is a good idea, but how do you fit B inside C, D or E…” etc.
 Highly Developed Argumentative Skills
An exemplary teacher picks and presents his point of view or arguments from theory, practice, and experience. Therefore, most times, whenever students put across an invalid argument, these teachers put across an educated counterargument that provides many authoritative premises. In general, most students pick up bad argumentative skills from being influenced by family members, friends, community, social media, etc.
A teacher, who walks his talk, will always present arguments on any topic with relevant facts, figures, data, etc. from the authorities of the concerned field. This, in turn, teaches the student vicariously to develop strong argumentative skills in all areas of life.
 Immense Enthusiasm for the Subject
Scientists believe that there is no protocol for effectively educating a student. Every educator is one of a kind and has an original instructive theory and teaching objectives. It is the enthusiasm that separates every teacher from one another. Passion defines one of the most attractive traits of a teacher.
Every student loves to interact with a teacher who is enthusiastic about learning the subject on an ongoing basis and then sharing it with others. Specialization requires enthusiasm. It is only with a specialization that anyone becomes an authority.
The enthusiasm of the teacher starts with a love for content. By learning new content and teaching it with excitement for students to learn it equally well, excellent teachers set a true example of ongoing education which does not end with acquiring a degree.
All in all, belonging to the Society of excellent teachers is not easy. The teacher needs to: motivate students; check their progress; update them with the latest research; develop students’ enthusiasm for the subject; develop students’ cognitive and argumentative skills; and be an active listener; to become exemplary teachers.
Though these qualities might take some time and much self-discipline to be highly developed in an individual, they will make any teacher inspirational.