10 Things to Do When You Are Preparing for a Teacher Evaluation

The goal of teacher evaluation is simple: to improve education standards for all members of society. It's done by examining the teacher's approaches and successes, and then making recommendations for improvements after a period of observation. During the process, the teacher may be interviewed on a one-to-one basis, the responses given by class members to certain instructions and activities will be looked at, and student achievements in comparison to their individual targets will be examined. Here, however, we're about to explore 10 things teachers can do to ensure they are thoroughly prepared for a forthcoming evaluation.

1. Inform your class - If you know a teacher evaluation is on the horizon, make sure your class do as well. State clearly the behavior you need and expect from them when the evaluator arrives, so that they can practice and adjust to this.

2. Be punctual - Even a few days before the evaluator is set to arrive - get to class early. Get into the habit of this to reduce your chances of showing up late and disappointing the observer on the day when they arrive.

3. Plan thoroughly - Ensure you have an exact plan of action for the lessons you're going to take in front of the external evaluator. Having a written and mental plan reduces your chances of slipping up in the 'real thing'

4. Have backup - It's a teacher's worst nightmare to run out of activities when the evaluator makes an appearance. Have extra tasks at hand in the event of your students finishing the main work in advance of the lesson-end.

5. Dress for success- Appearance plays an important role in impressing the evaluator. Aside from making an impression, you're bound to feel more confident in yourself if dressed smartly.

6. Prepare personal documents - It may be in the interests of the evaluator to study your notes, lesson plans, and portfolio. Make sure all documents like this are prepared and ready to be handed over.

7. Act calm - This is easier said than done, but acting calm makes you look like more of a complete, capable professional. Even if you are nervous, try and hide this and take the tasks ahead of you as a positive challenge.

8. Be versatile - Evaluators want to see the full extent of your capabilities, so avoid focusing on a single teaching method throughout the lesson. Incorporate lectures, group tasks, practical activities and written work to show you are flexible enough to meet a wide range of learning needs.

9. Play to your strengths - Of course, it's important to adopt a variety of techniques, but if there's something you feel you are particularly good at doing: use it. Impress the evaluator by showing yourself at your best, in a positive light.

10. Show interest in students' work - Don't act like you don't care; take the position of the ideal role model. Show a genuine desire for your students to do well, administer praise where applicable and be patient - always!

Using these simple methods, your next teacher evaluation should be far easier to get through. You'll be well on your way to getting a good report and informative feedback on improving further.