Why did I become a teacher? My guess is many teachers ask themselves this question on a weekly basis. There are days when a teacher may be so overwhelmed by the task in front of her, that she asks herself “what am I doing in front of this precocious group of third graders?” Teaching is a challenging profession, and it has to be something that you love to do. If not, the negative effects can be long lasting, for you and your students. If you are interested in becoming a teacher then you will need your Masters in Education.
I Didnt Always Want to Be a Teacher
I was not someone who grew up always wanting to be a teacher. Even though I played school a lot when I was little, by the time I was in junior high, I thought I wanted to be sportscaster. Once reality set in, I thought teaching would be a better career for someone who also wanted a family. I started out by working in day care while I was in high school and college. Soon, I realized that teaching was a profession that would feed my soul.
Helping Students Reach Their Full Potential
As I spent time working in day care, I saw the positive effect I could have on a child’s life. I could share a kind word or a gentle hug for the child who misses his mom. The joy of finally seeing a child learn his colors, after months of review is an amazing experience. All of this is at the heart of teaching. I can see a need, whether it is emotional or mental, and then fill that need.
Seeing the progression a child makes from September to June is exhilarating. For example, a first grader may come into my classroom in September not able to read. When he leaves my room in June, he will have progressed to become a fluent reader. I have to say, this is the main reason I became a teacher. I want to work with a student so that he can reach his full potential. I want to see him grow into an independent learner. When a student leaves my room in June, I want to be fully confident that he will have success at the next grade level. When I hear from a parent or teacher that one of my former students is succeeding at the next level, I know I have done my job.
The Challenging Part of Being a Teacher is the Parents Not the Kids
One of the most challenging parts of being a teacher is dealing with parents. This can also be one of the most rewarding facets of the job. Parents often are at a loss as to how to help their child. When you are able to work with those parents to find a solution that works both at home and at school, you will have changed their lives. Whether it is a homework concern, or a behavior issue, the more you can connect with and help your parents, the more success you will have in the classroom.
Will my students always like me?
No. Will every day be a smashing success? No. However, I know that during my years in the classroom, I influenced my students in a positive way. I taught at a very small, private elementary school. Since leaving that school, I have had the opportunity to see my students years removed from their eighth grade graduation. The response I get from them is priceless. They reminisce about the fun times we had. They lament over a particular incident where they got in trouble in the girls’ restroom. A few even share that because of my influence on them, they are entering the field of education. No matter the story, they have a smile on their face. This is ultimately why I became a teacher.