What makes a good ENGLISH TEACHER

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Is your English teacher good for you? Ask yourself these 5 questions and you will know what makes a good English teacher.

I took piano lessons from the age of 7 to 17.
10 years of piano lessons.

And yet, If you asked me to play something now, I wouldn’t be able to do it.
(OK, I lied. Maybe ONE Sonata by Chopin)

Because I didn’t have a good enough teacher.
She was sweet and kind, but she never gave me what I needed.
She never pushed me to do better,
she never inspired me,
she never gave me a hard time for not practicing.

She did everything a piano teacher should do,
But it just wasn’t good enough.

And looking back, I think of where I could have been today with all this time and money spent, having had the right teacher.


So many people settle for mediocre English teaching because it’s comfortable and they don’t believe they can find something better.
They stay because it’s close to home, it’s familiar, it’s cheap, they feel bad leaving, it doesn’t require them to do any research, or it simply allows them to stay in their comfort zone.

Have YOU ever taken English classes with a teacher but still felt STUCK?
Are you learning English and wondering how you can improve your training?
Are you an English teacher looking to take your teaching to the next level?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, this episode is a must-watch for you:

What makes a good ENGLISH TEACHER | 5 Questions Every English Learner Needs To Ask:

After watching the video, join the discussion below the video and answer these two questions:
Share one good and/or bad experience you’ve had with a teacher
What, in your opinion, makes a good teacher?

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Hey there, it’s Hadar and this is the Accent’s Way and this is the place for

you if you are a non-native speaker of English who is looking to feel confident, clear and proud when speaking English.

Now have you ever taken private lessons with a tutor or an English teacher or
even group classes and you weren’t sure if this is the right teacher for you?

Have you ever wondered whether or not you’re just wasting your time or
actually seeing progress…

So this episode is about how to know if you are learning
with the right teacher for you

and if you are getting the best out of your
So let’s get started.
The first thing you need to ask yourself is what is the emotion that you’re experiencing
once the class has ended.

Do you feel this bubbly excitement of success and improvement?

Do you feel defeated and challenged but you have clarity, you know what you need to work on?

Do you feel tired but happy?

Do you feel good about yourself?

Or do you feel like a failure? Do you beat yourself up?

Do you feel like you’ll never be able to get it?

Do you feel self-conscious? Are you ashamed?

A good teacher will never let you feel bad
about yourself.

Because a good teacher will always empower you, make you feel great about yourself, show your strengths

but also your weaknesses with a clear
strategy on how to improve that.

They will not keep you confused or stuck or feeling self-conscious and feeling like a failure.

You know I was once talking to
a teacher that used to teach at this

really big language school and he said
that the management had asked them to

understand what the biggest struggles of
their students are and then to

accentuate them, make them a big deal
instead of helping them resolve it.

Why? Because it was their marketing strategy. It kept them in the school, it kept them taking more and more

and more classes.

But it’s a horrible strategy if you ask me.

But unfortunately, people do that. So you as an English learner, you need to understand

what it is that you’re experiencing and if the these are

negative feelings then something is
wrong. Because this is not how it’s supposed to be.

Another thing you need to ask yourself is who does most of the talking?

If you find yourself just sitting there

and listening to the teacher talk about
English and about things and about rules

and explaining all of these things to
you and you find yourself not speaking

as much it’s a problem. Because you need
to do most of the speaking with feedback,

with guidance, with direction but you
need to do most of the speaking. So if

you find yourself mostly listening and
reading or writing then you might be

missing out on a better opportunity to
practice because if you’re learning just

passively constantly it’s just like
watching a YouTube video you want to put

it to practice right away and as much as
possible. So this is something by the way

that you can tell your teacher that you
want to do you can say: “Hey, I feel like

I’m not speaking enough. Let’s try a session where we just talk about things

that bother me, a few subjects, maybe read
an article and then talk about it but I

want to do most of the talking and you
just give me feedback.” Now of course when

you go into a lesson it’s easier to just
sit down and listen and be less active

but you got to catch yourself because if
that’s a situation you’re wasting your

time and money, right. So although it’s
easier and more convenient you got to

step out of your comfort zone, you got to
feel uncomfortable, you got to push

yourself and you got to stand your
ground and say what you need and

communicate it clearly to your teacher.

The third thing you need to ask yourself

is are you both aligned with what is the
best way for you to learn? What is the

best content to discuss? What is the best
way for you to get feedback? Some people

prefer to get feedback right away every
time they

mistake on every single thing, others
prefer to get feedback only on the

important things and some may prefer to
get feedback only at the end so they

don’t lose their train of thought as
they’re trying to speak. You need to

understand what works best for you and
you need to communicate that to your teacher.

Because some teachers are sometimes teaching because that’s what

they think is best and if someone tells
you: “No-no, I know what’s best for you. You

listen to me.” That person is not empathetic or is sensitive to your needs.

Same thing with content if your teacher
teaches you things that are not

interesting to you or you feel you’ll
never use then you need to say: “hey, this

doesn’t work for me. Let’s say something
else. I want to talk about this and I

need to talk about that and this is my
world of content, this is where I come from.

I want to discuss technology and
negotiations and practice small talk and

I don’t want so much to talk about hypothetical situations of Martha and Arthur at the zoo.

Understand that even
if you are with the same teacher there

isn’t just one method of teaching
English and you need to see if

something’s working for you, is it
getting your results,

do you understand it, do you pick it up
quickly. If not there is a problem with a

method, not with you, okay. It’s not you
that is the problem, maybe it’s the

method, maybe it’s the energy maybe it’s
how you feel because when you feel

self-conscious the brain shuts down and
you don’t learn anything new. But when

you feel empowered and open and
challenged in a good way then you are

open to change. In order for you to learn
something deeply in order for it to

stick you need to associate good emotion
as you’re learning and if the feeling is

of frustration and fear then it’s
not gonna stick, okay.

So you need to be aware of that and change whatever need to change in order for you to create the

best circumstances for yourself.

The fourth thing is do you know your 20 percent?

According to the Pareto principle, 80% of the results come from 20% of the causes.

So if we look at the business world for example then we can say that

responsible for 80% of the income.

So in English it’s very much the same thing.

If you work on the areas where you struggle
with okay whether it’s specific grammar

rules or specific sounds or an element
of fluency, if you work on that and just

on that it will get you 80% of the
result of where you want to be.

So you need to know what are the things that will get you the best results and your

teacher needs to recognize those things
and tell you, communicate to you what they are.

So whether or not you need to
work on your present tense because

everything else is great but you always
get stuck when you try to speak in the present tense

and what do you need to do in order to improve that.

Or let’s say that in terms of clarity you have all these things in your speech

but you don’t need to work on all the sounds. It’s enough that you

work on the R and on your rhythm and
it will give you a huge boost to your clarity.

So your job is to know what your

still struggle with but if you resolve
them it will kind of like open up the

gates to fluency and you will feel a lot
more fluent, you’ll get stuck less and

you’ll be a lot clearer and focus just
on that and you two need to do that

together. So if that hasn’t been
communicated to you just yet then you

need to ask your teacher to tell you
what those things are and ask your

teacher to focus on those things as
you’re learning. But if they don’t know

and they start giving you all of these
things and every time they give you

feedback they give you a lot of notes
about everything and you feel

overwhelmed and confused then there’s a
problem even when you get feedback the

feedback should be the 20% the things
that will get you the best results

because you don’t need to start correcting every single thing

it will be super inhibiting and almost impossible to grow from there.

The last thing is do you feel intellectually challenged?

Do you feel that your teacher sees you as a peer, as a person who can conduct a conversation,

an intelligent conversation with this
language barrier, yes

with less vocabulary but still the
content is engaging and interesting.

If you feel that they’re speaking to you
like a little kid it will make you feel like a little kid.

So you need to feel that your intelligence is not compromised.

You need to be able to talk about deep things even if it’s not perfect,

even if you make mistakes and even if you’re lacking the vocabulary.

Your teacher is there to help you, right.

But you don’t need to feel like you are

only talking about stupid things just
because it’s an English class.

No, that’s the wrong direction.

And of course, you can tell your teacher that and change that.

Take charge of your training, okay?

So to conclude, you have to be responsible for the time that you’re investing.

Don’t leave all responsibility to the teacher.

Sometimes they don’t know what they’re doing, sometimes they think

that they’re doing the best thing for
you when in fact it’s not and you it’s

like in a relationship right if you’re
not gonna speak up nothing will change

and then at the end, you will quit and
everyone loses, okay.

You lose time and money and they lose an opportunity to really help someone, okay.

So communicate your needs, understand your needs, understand what is not working for you

and then change it.

So to conclude, I want you to take action and answer these two questions in the comments below:

The first thing is tell us about one really

good experience with a teacher and one
not so good experience with a teacher

and why that happened and what did you
do about it?

The second thing is what to your opinion makes a good teacher? Right.

What are you looking for in a good teacher.

So I named my five things. I’m really curious to hear what are the

things that you are looking for in a
good teacher.

So just so you know you don’t really have to take private lessons or group classes

in order to improve your English.

You can do that on your own and if you want to do

it watching YouTube videos and using
online resources I’d be happy to help you.

So don’t forget to subscribe and hit
the bell to get notifications and you

can also visit my website to get a lot
of free stuff, free courses and

really feel the improvement.

Improve significantly.

Thank you so much for watching and I’ll see you next week in the next video.


Show Episode Transcript

17 Comments on “What makes a good ENGLISH TEACHER”

  1. I have a lot of good different experience with the Academic Teachers back then in Kinder to College.
    I could say that in life, Experience is my best Teacher. Also, people around me is to be considered
    as a Teacher, because the only thing I know is that I can learn from them.

    In my opinion a good teacher is being a good role model, not selfish and I think not choosy or having
    a favoritism. I always look for a simple, funny energetic, down to earth and approachable Teacher,
    who will also remember his or her student. Pretty sure It is never way too easy to be a Teacher however
    that Interactions is pretty more important.

  2. All my experience of learning English was good. That’s because I had only one school teacher that was the best for me!
    A good teacher is an inspiring and motivating teacher. He’s a good listener and always ahead of the curve in terms of teaching!

  3. Hello Hadar 😉

    I always see to my teachers like a profesional people, and they give everything for us (sometimes :P), so some aspects that I think they would always have to be a good teacher some:
    1. They should be a joy to teach us
    2. To be professional in the way of teach
    3. Don’t be cruel or bad whit the students
    4. To create many ways of teaching (visual, games, computer, etc.)

    I’ve had a bad experience in the Highschool with a teacher, well almost, because I remember that she always came to the classroom and just asked us to open our books an read a lesson and then we have to answer in another book, but never we had a strong communication with the teacher, how was the lesson or if we understood, nope, nothing, but thanks to that I joined a club of English, out of the school, because I really wanted to understand English. I know it that have a long road still but I never give up.

    Thank You Hadar

  4. Dear Hadar !
    Thank you again so much for accepting me as a visitor. Having my health handicaps, that is the only possibility for me to participate in your group.

    Over my 84 years I have had several foreign language teachers (in German, in French and first of all in English). I think they were mostly quite good. The best ones of them, I think had a teaching style very similar to the yours one (I guess I can judge it from the many of yours videos I have seen). I try to list of the character and style marks just as come to my mind without a deep study:

    1. To be professional.
    2. To support the student’s self-confidence.
    3. To show that the foreign language is beautiful (as any languages people use) and it’s an entertainment to study it not a boring obligation. (Including to study the accent.)
    4. to be a “partner” in this “entertainment”, not a peevish, rigorous “teacher”.
    5. to make the teaching-learning relationship to be a kind of human one (a kind of friendship ?). -particularly when the student has developed to the level of expressing own ideas.
    My recent “English teacher” here in Hungary e.g. (a UK citizen from London with master degree in English teaching) is a good friend of mine. I’m sure our discussions (twice per week) are useful particularly because of that.

    1. Hey Laszlo, thank you so much for your answer! You’re so lucky to have such amazing teachers!

  5. Hi Hadar,
    I often watch your videos and learn they have helped me a lot. In my country I only studied English in Junior High School. I had this class only once a week and the class was basic and superficial. I Always wanted to speak English, but I didn’t have this opportunity before. Well, today I need to speak English in my life. I’m going to English classes twice a week, my teacher is amazing, she tries to make the best for each student, but it is hard, because in my class we have different levels of students and people constantly talking when teacher is talking. For me a good teacher is one who gives support, positive, creative, encourage and push us for not to give up. I understand my clients well and I speak with them, but I don’t speak fluently, but I believe everything is possible when you believe.
    Thank you.

    1. Hey Jane! Thank you for your comment. Fluency is something that comes with time and practice. The more (longer period) you practice the better you become)

  6. Hello everyone! Great video!
    From my experience, when I was first beginning this journey of learning my second language (English ) I was so scared and nervous, this was a whole new world that I was beginning to explore now, looking back to those first days and first teachers, I can say that I was blessed to have lovely and encouraging ladies that pushed me to speak up and do better. In my opinion, what makes a good teacher; is a teacher that pushes you to do better and to discover what your strengths and abilities are. Also, that can make you feel good no matter at what level you may be starting. The sky is the limit! Those were the words I heard from my first English teachers.

  7. I am writing this from the perspective of a volunteer helping in English classes and as a mature adult (in my 60s) learning Spanish. When I help in English classes or take language classes, I’ve noticed that some teachers do not vary their teaching methods even when the students are struggling. I also helped at a school that was funded by grants and the grants required regular testing and progress on the tests. So sometimes the teachers focused on what would help the students pass the test rather than what the students wanted to learn. Frustrating for everyone.

    The teachers that I enjoy bring in culture and interesting topics. Even in very beginning classes for refugees they find ways for their students to tell them about their lives. I attend a group that is reading a Mexican novel and translating as we go. Very challenging but so much more interesting than watered down reading for beginners. Some days we only get through 4 pages in the hour but we get practice at pronounciation, we help each other with difficult passages and talk about the Mexican history and culture of the novel’s setting as well as the style of the writer.

    Thanks for your insights on English language learning. I hope that it can help me be a better tutor.

    1. Hey Christine, thank you for sharing your experience! Yes, you know, I think that test’s system really encourage students not to learn but learn how to pass the test which is sad ((

  8. Dear Hadar,
    Appreciated the way you explain the lessons. Since your page is accent’s way and my surname is aksan (accent) it sounds good 🙂 I will start to check more your web page starting next week.
    See you. Bye.

    1. Hey Yuksel, thank you for your comment! Such a pleasure to know that you find Hadar’s lessons helpful. Welcome to our global community of English learners))

  9. Good evening everyone,
    And thanks to Hadar another fantastic video of her.
    I started my English “journey” on last December from zero and I have to take some basic lesson.
    Since January to March I have employed 30% of my time on lessons and the rest with self taught. However, fifteen basic classes with an ancient, old way to teach English didn’t do much for me. “Cold” grammar rules a lot (I know perfectly the importance of grammar but if those keep without practical meaning they become a big problem); I saw big difficulties for improving: no conversation (obviously, because I was absolute beginner), bad listening capacity…in other words I was support on my will only.
    From March I noticed that existed different and much modern way to learn a new language (Accent’s Way is a very good tool for that!).
    I think the meaning Hadar’s way is to try a sort of reasoned full immersion, although “remotely”.
    Anyway I need guidance for this immersion, for good practicing, for, finally, improve all necessary skills.
    I believe this is a great journey but as with every big journey we need huge, amazing driving and accomplice too.
    Thanks to Hadar.

    1. Hey Giovanni, wow! Thank you so much for telling us about your English journey with us! Speaking is an important part of language fluency. In other words, the more you speak the better you become. We’re happy enough to have a wonderful online community founded by Hadar. Have a look at this video https://youtu.be/B6FWkGpPUQw and then decide if you want to join us)

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