4g. Teachers communicate effectively.

Standard 4: Teachers facilitate learning for their students

Teachers communicate in ways that are clearly understood by their students. They are perceptive listeners and are able to communicate with students in a variety of ways even when language is a barrier. Teachers help students articulate thoughts and ideas clearly and effectively.

Critical Elements: Discipline, Expectations, Attention, Time, Clarity, Principles of Learning, Objectives

Related Critical Elements


Focusing student attention on learning experiences is perhaps the most fundamental management challenge for teachers. Attention is the litmus test of performance among the group of management areas: Attention, Momentum, Discipline, Space, Time and Routines. Unless students are paying attention to the instruction, it does not matter how great the lesson is. Engaging and involving… [read more]


Clarity, according to The Skillful Teacher, is the ability to cause mental acts within student’s minds that will result in their understanding or being able to do something. Compare the definition of Clarity with the definition of teaching. Teaching: Anything a person does that increases the probability of intended learning. The Skillful Teacher text uses… [read more]


Many teachers use a disproportionate amount of time and energy towards classroom management or discipline. Sadly, a significant percentage of teachers leave teaching because they found they rarely dealt with anything other than discipline. If you find yourself struggling in the area of classroom discipline you are not alone!


Nothing influences behavior so strongly as the clear expectations of a significant other. —Jim Steffen, Management Consultant Classrooms are dynamic and complex societies that are filled with expectations: expectations that teachers have for students and that students have for teachers and each other. Expectations explain a good deal of what we see in classrooms—the good… [read more]


A clear objective is an anchor of good daily lesson planning. The quality of a teacher’s thinking about objectives during planning directly accounts for the effectiveness of student learning experiences. A learning objective should describe what students should know or be able to do at the end of the course that they couldn’t do before…. [read more]

Principles of Learning

Principles of Learning describes twenty-four teaching concept “power packs,” each one self-contained and ready for use as an addition to any teacher’s repertoire. Each of the twenty four concepts is grounded in learning theory and are certain to increase the rate and durability of students’ learning. What each of these principles share in common is… [read more]


Time is the currency of life. Teachers have enormous power in how the currency of time is spent in the classroom. When students do what, in what order, and for how long is largely under the teacher’s control. A recommendation from The Skillful Teacher is that teachers be as deliberate as possible in managing student… [read more]

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