How Do You Make a Teacher Great?

How I'm trying to change the world NOW

How I'm trying to change the world NOW

A few weeks ago, great thinkers from around the world converged at Palm Springs, FL for the annual TED conference.  Bill Gates was one of this year’s keynote speakers, posing two questions to the audience:

  1. How do you stop a deadly disease that’s spread by mosquitoes?

  2. How do you make a teacher great?

His first question focused on the historical evolution of human genetics to adapt to and overcome diseases transmitted by mosquitoes. Gates also focused on the economic distribution of countries who have successfully dealt with malaria. He calls on the collaboration of communicators, social scientists, mathematicians, drug companies, and world governments to provide the road map and tools for recovery.

Secondly, Gates’ focus on teaching excellence called for the development of a strong system of teacher recognition. He proposes that testing data, and video analysis be used to recognize and reward good teachers. According to Bill Gates, top teachers increase the performance of their students by 10% each year. Teachers need to be told how good they are! He praised a system of education called “KIPP” and recommended the book “Work Hard. Be Nice.” by Jay Matthews.

If you know a great teacher that should be recognized for their work, please consider nominating them for RAC-CEMS’ Excellence in STEM Teaching Award. The next round of nominations will be reviewed the second week of  April, and the award winner will be announced on April 18th.

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