Last week I was perusing Facebook and noticed a post from a friend, Jim, that I felt needed a comment. The post had a picture of his computer on a table in the sun by a pool with the caption, “I love my job!” I snidely remarked, “Why don’t we trade for a day?” Jim’s response was typical, “I can’t handle my own kids for a day, so I will be turning that offer down.”
When ever anyone finds out that I am a teacher, first inquiry is what grade: “7th grade”. After hearing that I am a middle school teacher the second comment is “You must be a saint!”or “Rough age” or “I couldn’t do that”. It doesn’t matter who I encounter, this is the typical reaction. In fact it does not matter what level taught, this is the typical response.I love teaching middle school students and most teachers Do love TEACHING. So why do so many feel this way?
Sure different people have different desires and preferences for careers. Introverts prefer jobs with littler contact with others. Extroverts do well in sales and customer service fields. Some have scientific minds and do well in medicine and engineering. Financial minds work well in business and on Wall Street. Don’t we needed all of their expertise in education, teaching and modeling learning for students?
Our schools are filled with all types of students with diverse learning styles. Education needs teachers that are just as diverse. To create a climate where ALL students can succeed, students need a teacher to connect with. Someone that has a similar learning style and preferences. Not just educators who “love teaching students and helping them learn.” (Although this helps!!)
Media reflects a society that feels teaching is “easy” with “summers off”. If this is so then you would think all schools would have flocks of highly qualified teachers. When in fact most school have difficultly finding more that 1 qualified candidate.
Teaching is hard. It takes a unique passion for helping others and loving youth to be successful. IF society wants to create a better education system, then we better create a way to help more be passionate about being teachers!