How to Motivate Teachers

by David Stewart

Motivated teachers make motivated students. Teachers feel motivated when they experience fulfillment in their job, which encourages them to perform better. It is equally important that teachers have access to resources that enable them to grow professionally, to make them feel motivated. While school management might hesitate to implement strategies that exceed their budgetary constraints, several easy ideas are within your capabilities to motivate your teachers.

Foster a positive school-teacher relationship. School administrators and principals should not be strangers to teachers. Make yourself approachable so that teachers do not hesitate to come to you with grievances or ideas for improvement. Education World gives the example of a school where administrators assist in daily school activities such as cleaning school premises and canteens, and reporting to work before others and staying back late.

Facilitate. Make work demands easier for teachers wherever possible so that they can allot more time to teaching students. According to research findings published on Oregon School Boards Association website, the primary objective of people choosing the teacher profession is to educate children, and they derive utmost satisfaction when they are able to do this. Decrease official protocols such as report generations and staff meetings so that teachers get to spend lesser time on such administrative procedures.

Give credit. Recognizing their efforts is one of the best ways to keep teachers motivated. Send emails, circulars or arrange for a special staff meeting, describing the contribution of the teacher(s) toward student development. Complement the public appreciation with a special note of thanks in private. Combine praise with a tangible award such as a gift coupon or small mementos. Such recognition motivates the doer to do more and inspires other teachers to take such initiatives and invest efforts.

Involve community. Spread teacher achievements through the community and create awareness of the efforts teachers put in to create good learning experiences for students. Education World shares the example of a school that selects its teachers that have made excellent contributions toward student learning and gets the local media interview and broadcast the teachers' achievements.

Provide opportunities for teachers to develop their professional knowledge and skills. Facilitate their participation in professional development seminars, workshops and conferences. Encourage peer collaborations where teachers can share their new knowledge and skills with other teachers. Equip teachers with all instruction materials they need to teach students effectively; approve as much as your budget agrees and for extra budgets, seek help from the community.