Tomorrow is the start of my internship. Apparently I should be “better prepared” because this is the second one.
I struggle to accept this attempt of comfort when I think any kind of comfort doesn’t exist when dealing with hormonally charged teenagers. So, as I attempt to prepare for sleep before tomorrow’s onslaught, a very familiar thought walked through my mind: What does it mean to be a teacher? Shockingly (or not so shockingly) this is a concept that isn’t new. An answer that often meets this questions comprises of words like: inspire, role-model, change, motivator, new thought, liberate etc etc etc
But what does it mean to be a teacher? What exactly is my purpose? Am I just there to deliver information? This is fundamentally impossible. The personality of anyone can’t be divorced from their work. Right?
This isn’t a superficial examination: looking at what it means to be a teacher is directly linked to what is learning, and as a result the foundations of the education system. The system which, by law says each and every person must engage with. So examining this is not done lightly. And honestly, on the advent of my teaching practice, these questions are fitting.
Another question which seems to be growing at the speed of a newborn: What is a successful teacher? How do you measure success in the education system? Then, how do you measure personal success? In a society built on competition, it would be near impossible to ask a professional to remove or try to dilute their competitive nature from their work. So what is a successful teacher? A punctual one? A role-model? A figure of authority and structure?
Many questions, each with its own variety of answers. Watch this space.