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Teaching Practice: How to Become an Effective Teacher

An effective teaching practice ensures children are getting the maximum benefits from your lessons. Here are ideas to improve your teaching practice.

Teaching Practice: How to Become an Effective Teacher

Teaching Practice: How to Become an Effective Teacher

As an educator, it's important to research the most effective teaching practices to implement in the classroom. An effective teaching system ensures all children get the maximum benefits from every lesson and you can track your children’s progress accurately. However, there’s much to consider when developing a strategy that works for your children.

In this article, we’ll explore the benefits of refining your teaching practices and share some of the best teaching practices to implement as an early childhood educator.

Female teacher sitting at a round wooden table with four young children playing with wooden puzzles.


What are teaching practices? 

Teaching practices in early education encompass a broad range of techniques and strategies used by educators to foster learning, development, and well-being among young children. These practices are intricately designed to cater to the diverse needs of children, recognizing that each child is unique, with distinct interests, abilities, and learning styles.

Effective teaching practices range from structured activities aimed at building specific skills to more flexible, exploratory activities that encourage creativity and critical thinking. Central to these practices is the creation of a safe, inclusive, and stimulating environment that supports children's holistic growth. This involves not only imparting knowledge but also nurturing emotional and social development, guiding children in positive interactions, and promoting a love for lifelong learning.

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Why is teaching practice important?

Teaching practices in early education settings lay the foundation for a child's cognitive, social, and emotional development. They not only impart knowledge but also shape attitudes and values that will influence a child's future. Effective teaching practices have several benefits, including:

Creates engaging learning environments

By employing diverse teaching strategies and lesson plans, educators create classrooms that are vibrant and engaging. This keeps young learners curious, motivated, and eager to explore. An engaging environment is one where children feel free to express themselves, ask questions, and explore new ideas. It is a space where learning is not just effective but also enjoyable.

Supports individual needs

Tailored teaching practices allow educators to meet the unique needs of each child. Recognizing that every child learns differently, effective teaching adjusts its approach to cater to varying learning styles, speeds, and interests. This customized support ensures that all children, regardless of their starting point, can make progress and feel successful in their learning journeys.

Establishes strong relationships with families 

High-quality teaching practices include open and frequent communication with families. By sharing insights from the classroom and involving parents and caregivers in the learning process, educators build trust and partnership. This relationship is crucial for creating a consistent support system for children, both at home and in the classroom.

Enable your teachers to build quality connections with families by using a simple communication app like brightwheel. With easy family messaging, teachers can connect with families in real-time, keeping them informed and engaged in their child's learning. They can also share photos and videos or send newsletters for longer updates.

Improves your assessment practices 

Reflective teaching practices enhance the way educators assess learning. Instead of relying solely on traditional forms of evaluation, teachers who engage in thoughtful practice use a variety of assessment methods to understand each child's growth. This leads to more accurate, comprehensive, and beneficial feedback for the child, the educator, and the family.

Best teaching practices 

As an educator, when you establish effective teaching practices, your children have more opportunities to learn and grow. You can implement many strategies to create a cohesive learning environment for your preschoolers. However, remember that preschoolers will benefit from diverse strategies. Before settling for a schedule or routine, try other practices and see what works best for your children. 

Here are some proven early childhood teaching practices to try out in your classroom.

1. Create a well-designed classroom

Whether preschoolers are spending three or eight hours in a classroom, the design of the physical space has a huge impact on their learning. Thoughtfully arranged spaces can stimulate curiosity, facilitate exploration, and promote social interactions among young learners.

A classroom designed with distinct areas for different activities—such as a quiet reading corner, a creative arts station, and an interactive play area—encourages children to make choices and engage in various types of learning experiences. Flexibility and adaptability are also key in classroom design, allowing educators to cater to a diverse range of needs and interests.

When creating an environment for early learners, it's essential to consider inclusivity. This means providing materials, resources, and activities that represent different cultures, languages, abilities, and family structures. An inclusive classroom sends a powerful message of acceptance and respect, fostering a sense of belonging for all children.

2. Integrate child assessment data in individual and group planning

This is one of the simplest concepts, but it's also the foundation of understanding your preschoolers. It's important to gauge how preschoolers perform individually and in groups. For this to happen, begin by taking a genuine interest in your preschoolers' lives—get to know their interests, learn what motivates them to develop new skills, and understand their barriers to learning.

In addition, use formative and summative assessments to monitor the progress of your preschoolers. For example, you can do a summative assessment after every lesson block, whether it's an entire school year or a series of lesson plans. You can also try formative assessments after every day-to-day activity. This will help you understand each child's needs and how to best support them.

3. Encourage good communication in the classroom 

Children are more at ease when they can communicate their needs and know that their opinions are heard. As an educator, it's important to teach your preschoolers how to communicate by doing the following: 

  • Acknowledge what they say. It's important that children know you notice and hear them by giving them attention, whether it's through observation or a simple comment. For example, if a child helps another one stand up after falling, you can say, "Good job, James. We should always help our friends when they're in need."
  • Encourage persistence. Praising effort is great, but it's important to teach preschoolers it's okay to push themselves. For example, when a child is struggling to find the right words, you can tell them, "You're thinking of amazing words to describe the cat, Kavi—keep going!"
  • Provide supportive feedback. Instead of giving general feedback, find a way to give specific feedback to your preschoolers. For example, you can say, "The ball never went into the hoop, Juliet. You might want to throw a little harder next time."

4. Promote critical thinking and problem-solving

No child is born a critical thinker; it's a skill they need to master. Here are some tips on transforming preschoolers into critical thinkers:

  • Encourage children to ask questions. Support children’s problem-solving skills by giving them space to ask questions and figure out how to do things on their own. For example, when you're doing a project, you can ask questions like, "Do you think there is any other way to do it?" or "What should we do next?"  
  • Allow room for independence. It's easy to fall into the temptation to do things yourself in the classroom when you know you can do them faster. However, give preschoolers a chance to step up and help every chance they get, which can build their confidence
  • Listen to them. Hear them out when they have an idea for a new project and encourage them to explore.

5. Consider dual language learners 

A good teaching practice accommodates dual language learners. This includes developing strategies that encourage children to continue learning their first language as they learn English. 

If you don't speak or understand a child's first language, find other ways to support them. For example, you can arrange for volunteers who speak the preschooler's home language to come and engage with them. You can also find other appropriate materials like videos or visuals to encourage them to continue developing their home language.

6. Have routines in place 

A consistent daily routine can help children perform better in the classroom as they know what to expect each day. An effective schedule balances structure and flexibility and supports children's various developmental needs.

Here are strategies to create the best schedule for your classroom: 

  • Manage transitions effectively. Incorporate cues like ringing a bell, singing a song, or dimming the lights as an indicator that it's time to start or stop an activity. An engaging transition activity can also help children move on to the next thing in your schedule.
  • Use visual aids. A visual schedule that shows pictures of a sequence of events or activities gives children a clear reminder of what comes next and how to complete a task. Place visual schedules in strategic areas around the classroom, for example, post your end-of-day routine near the classroom door so children have a visual cue on what to do as they prepare to leave for the day.
  • Embrace flexibility. All children learn at their own pace and reach developmental milestones at different times. Create a schedule that can adjust to the needs of your children and let activities be guided by children's interests, energy levels, and engagement. 


Effective teaching practices are vital in early childhood learning. A good strategy allows children to get the best out of every lesson. It also makes learning fun for children because the lessons are tailored according to their needs. By interacting and monitoring preschoolers' progress, an educator can support every child based on their individual needs. 

Brightwheel is the complete solution for early education providers, enabling you to streamline your center’s operations and build a stand-out reputation. Brightwheel connects the most critical aspects of running your center—including sign in and out, parent communications, tuition billing, and licensing and compliance—in one easy-to-use tool, along with providing best-in-class customer support and coaching. Brightwheel is trusted by thousands of early education centers and millions of parents. Learn more at

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