What Great Teachers Do Differently : Nineteen Things That Matter Most book cover
3rd Edition

What Great Teachers Do Differently
Nineteen Things That Matter Most

ISBN 9780367344641
Published April 15, 2020 by Routledge
150 Pages

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USD $29.95

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Book Description

What are the beliefs and behaviors that set great teachers apart? In this internationally renowned bestseller, Todd Whitaker reveals 19 keys to becoming more effective in the classroom.

This essential third edition features new sections on why it’s about more than relationships, how to focus on a consistent, engaging learning environment, and the importance of choosing the right mode—business, parent, child—to improve your classroom management.

Perfect for educators at any level of experience, for independent reading or for schoolwide book studies, this practical book will leave you feeling inspired and ready to do the things that matter most for the people who matter most—your students.


Table of Contents


Meet the Author


Chapter 1 Why Look at Great?

Studying Effective Teachers

Chapter 2 It’s People, Not Programs

Programs Come and Go

How Open Classrooms Got Started

Assertive Discipline: The Problem or the Solution?

It’s Not What You Do, It’s How You Do It

The Poor Lecturer’s Classroom

Chapter 3 The Power of Expectations



Stop the Thumping!


Set Expectations at the Start of the Year

We Are Still Undefeated

Chapter 4 If You Say Something, Mean It

The Football Coach

This Time, I Really Mean It

Smile When You Say That

When You Are Ready

From Four to Three

Class Rules the Day

Chapter 5 Prevention versus Revenge

When a Student Misbehaves

Sending Students to the Office

"Nuthin’ Happened"

A Teacher’s Bag of Tricks

Respect Your Students, Their Parents—and Yourself

Twenty-Four Students on the Side of the Teacher

Restoring Trust

Chapter 6 It Is More Than Relationships

Relationships, Expectations, and Consistency

The Start of the School Year

Teaching Is Complicated

It Takes All Three

Chapter 7 Choose The Right Mode

The Disruptor

At Home

Every Day

Business Mode

Office Referral

Chapter 8 High Expectations—for Whom?

Are High Expectations Important?

Chapter 9 Who Is the Variable?

Who Is the Variable in the Classroom?

What If the Students Do Poorly?

How Do We Deal with the Demands of Others?

Chapter 10 Focus on Students First

Change for Students’ Sake?

How Broad Is Your Vision?

Three Ways to React

Focus on Colleagues Second

The Hotel California

Remember What Matters

How Do You View Your Siam?

Chapter 11 Ten Days Out of Ten

We Never Forget That One Time

You Do Not Have to Like the Students

The Power of Praise

Five Strategies That Help Praise Work

Too Much Nice

Chapter 12 Be the Filter

How Is Your Day Going?

The Angry Parent

Filter Yourself

When the Teacher Sneezes

One Goal, Every Day

Where the Elite Meet?

The World Outside School

"This Is the Worst Group of Kids We’ve Ever Had"

Perception Can Become Reality

Chapter 13 Don’t Need to Repair—Always Do Repair

Some Never Need to Repair—But Always Do

Some Always Need to Repair—But Never Do

I Am Sorry That Happened

The Highway Patrol

Chapter 14 The Ability to Ignore

Hey, Pretzel Face!

Ignore Minor Errors

Understand the High Achievers

Chapter 15 Intentionalness

Why Does Stefan Always Pick Noah?

The All-School Assembly

The Faculty Meeting

Flexible Seating

Chapter 16 Base Every Decision on the Best People

Shoplifters Will Be Prosecuted!

This Means You!

What Will the Best Students Think?

The Best Students Will Be "Fine" No Matter What

The Teacher’s Pet

Chapter 17 In Every Situation, Ask Who Is Most Comfortable and Who Is Least Comfortable

Treat Everyone as If They Were Good

Uncomfortable Feelings Make People Change—One Way or Another

Pay for Performance

Chapter 18 Put Yourself in Their Position

Teacher Pleasers

Model the Behavior You Expect

How Others See Us

What Do You Choose to Be?

Chapter 19 What About These Darn Standardized Tests?

Without Success, Tests Become the School

Raise Those Test Scores!

Keep Testing in Perspective

So, You Want to Improve Your Reading Scores?

Chapter 20 Make It Cool to Care

Having a "Cool" Classroom

The Great Teacher

Merry Christmas, Everyone!

Who Are the Legends?

Touch the Heart, Then Teach the Child

Chapter 21 Clarify Your Core

Nineteen Things That Matter Most


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Todd Whitaker (@toddwhitaker) is a leading presenter in the field of education and has written more than 50 books including the bestseller What Great Principals Do Differently. He is a professor of educational leadership at the University of Missouri.


"The book is full of salient reminders for all teachers, regardless of the number of years spent in the profession. … Whitaker deserves commendation for his ability to weave his professional knowledge and personal experiences together to create an individualized book full of opportunities for reflective thinking about things that matter most."--S. Mia Obiwo and Diane Truscott, Teachers College Record, February 16, 2021, https://www.tcrecord.org 

"What Great Teachers Do Differently will challenge your thinking; give you the impetus to become an even better teacher; might reaffirm your teaching philosophy and methodology; inspire you. Most of all, it will remind you that “Every teacher makes an impact. Great teachers make a difference.” (p.126) Be that teacher!"--Linda Biondi, MiddleWeb Review, February 18, 2021, https://www.middleweb.com/44638/nineteen-things-great-teachers-do-differently