1. The ability to empathise
2. The ability to notice small details
3. The ability to be both reflective and reflexive

Not for a moment am I suggesting that these traits are inherent and possessed naturally. These abilities can be cultivated with diligent effort and application. In fact, some of the best teachers I have encountered have found these skills don’t come naturally but have had to work at them. In my own experience as a teacher I found number 2 particularly difficult. As someone who is more naturally a big picture person, noticing the small details in the classroom was hard for me: the two students chatting quietly at the back; the tiny ball of paper flicked across the room.

What else would you add to this list of essential non cognitive skills for teachers?

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