Yes, teacher recommendations ARE important; they can be a powerful application element as they’re an opportunity for Admissions Officers to see a different side of you. Plus, the letters are (typically) written by experienced adults. So take the recommendation letters seriously and follow these tips to guide the recommender!
Tips via Time Magazine’s article on How to Secure Teacher Recommendations. Comments via The Application Authority. Tips can be used for any recommender, including teachers, coaches, program directors, etc.
Select your recommender wisely: Think about your experience with that teacher and what type of information he/she can include about you. Be selective and pick wisely.Ask for permission: Never assume a teacher will give you a recommendation.Prepare an information packet: You might know your teacher well, but remember that he/she is writing tens, if not hundreds, of application letters each year. Prepare a comprehensive packet the teacher can reference. Include pertinent information you want the teacher to remember and potentially reference.Make an appointment to reintroduce yourself: Prepare the information packet and then make an appointment to talk through the information with your teacher.Communicate strongly: Communicate the deadline clearly and follow up politely as needed.Be thankful: Write a handwritten thank you note expressing your gratitude for their time.