Why do I teach???

Posted: March 2, 2011 in Uncategorized

You go into teaching for all kinds of reasons: to touch the lives of those youngsters, to provide those darlings with the skills they need to be successful, to enrich their lives with your enthusiastically planned lessons and units, to fulfill a desire to serve those around you. Noble. And, naive.

The reality is this: students who resist your efforts to shower your knowledge upon them, students who fight and kick at the rules and procedures set for learning to take place, students with apathy so large in their eyes you can touch it.

You wonder–why did I go into teaching…

And, then, you run into a student at the grocery store whom you had had in class years ago and he says, “Hey, I bought my wife and kids a cat.”

“Really,” I replied as I realized who had spoken. Memories of that class came flooding back and I could hear the debates we had all year: which was better–cats or dogs. Cats, of course.

Over the years, I have run into this student at various times. I have watched him transform his life from an unsure middle-schooler to the confident husband and father of two little ones. Every time we meet he says, “Dogs rule! Cats drool!”

And every time I reply, “Cats rule! Dogs drool!”

It’s those moments. Those connections that tell you why you teach.

  1. MaryHelen says:

    This post warms my heart. I love it. I love seeing how students grow, especially if they remember something that I did that touched their lives. That’s what makes teaching worth it.

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