English Language Listening Library Online
Mixer #109 | High Intermediate 6

What makes a good teacher?

Listen as a group of people talk about what they think makes a good teacher.

Cheryl / Guam
speakerWhat makes a good teacher? Well, I think that a good teacher is able to listen well to a student's concerns, answer questions well, explain anything that the student might not understand. I remember my favorite teacher in elementary school, she was always able to listen attentively to the students and in reverse we were able to listen attentively to her when she would explain or teach us something.

Ray / United States
speakerGood teacher, good teacher, good teacher. Well, one thing that makes a good teacher is somebody who has the ability to place themselves in the mind of the student, the person who is trying to learn whatever the subject is. A lot of people who are experts in a field, they know it very, very, very well, but they've forgotten what it was like to be somebody who doesn't know that field. So they take certain things for granted when they explain and as a result, they leave things out that somebody who doesn't know the field needs to know in order to understand what is being said.

Demelza / Australia
speakerI think what makes a good teacher is someone that can identify both what they think the students need in their class and also be able to provide a way that students can understand different things for example grammar and make the classroom an enjoyable experience too.

Jeff / Canada
speakerWhat I think makes a good teacher is patience and love for you work. I think you have to love teaching to be a really good teacher. And I think you need patience and you really want to see the students succeed. And that's what makes a good teacher I think.

Nydja / United States
speakerA good teacher is a person who challenges their students at every turn and breaks down their accepted norms and teaches them to be open to new ones.

Hoa / Vietnam
What makes a good teacher? That's a hard question. Well, I think a speakergood teacher should be knowledgable, first of all. I think he or she should be dedicated to his work. He should be good at convincing, talking -- what I mean is like they should have communication skills to interact with students and to make the students work. So maybe dedication, knowledge, and communication skills could make a good teacher.

Learn Vocabulary from the Lesson!



She was always able to listen attentively to the students.

When someone is attentive, it means that they are listening or watching very carefully. See the examples below.

  1. He is very attentive when he listens to music because he remembers all the words.
  2. It's hard for me to watch movies attentively because I always fall asleep.



A lot of people are experts in a field but they've forgotten what it's like to not be an expert.

Field, in this case, means a subject of study. Here are two samples.

  1. I thought I wanted to get into the field of engineering but there was too much math.
  2. Nursing is a very rewarding field -- there are lots of jobs and you can make good money.

take for granted


They take certain things for granted.

When people take things for granted it means that they don't focus on it or pay attention to it. Notice the following.

  1. He took it for granted that I knew how to change the tire.
  2. He takes it for granted that I will always clean the kitchen and he doesn't appreciate it.



A good teacher challenges students and breaks down their accepted norms.

Norms are rules or what everyone expects is normal. Here are a couple of examples.

  1. A good teacher usually establishes norms for behavior on the first day of class.
  2. My parents have really strict norms about TV and computer games. I have to finish my home work first!



I think a good teacher should be knowledgable.

A person who is knowledgable knows a lot of information about a particular subject. Notice the following.

  1. He is incredibly knowledgable about baseball.
  2. I try to be knowledgable about current events so I read the newspaper.

Vocabulary Quiz

attentively • field • for granted
norms • knowledgable
  1. She is very about nutrition.
  2. Please listen because this is very important.
  3. We need to set some about how I expect you to act at school.
  4. I help you a lot so please don't take it .
  5. Math is not the most popular of study.

Answer the following questions about the interview.

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Mixer Video #109
What makes a good teacher?

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