1. It’s not fair to expect students to realize how much time and effort you put into lessons that could be both interesting and funy ánd still educational
They simply cannot know this. There’s a student here and there that for some inexplicable reaon has reached a level of maturity that allows him/her to peek into your world and what you’re trying to accomplish, but it’s not fair to expect that of all of them.
So, today I realized that all in all there are two top values I strive to show, and that is respect and empathy.
I know posts with much more detail and delivered in a story-telling fashion get more hits, but I don’t want to name any names, hence the vagueness.
I will also add that as a student I was entirely oblivious to teachers’ efforts and mostly just resented them for becoming a teacher, because without teachers I thought I would have had much more free time to study the stuff I wanted to study. Honestly, I still don’t quite see the point of having a teacher for most every day subjects you can pretty learn on your own if you have the motivation and the time for it, especially now with the internet… I did long for teachers as a teenagers, but not for any subject taught at my highschool. My favorite colleagues are those that offer, far, far more vital stuff than the offical curriculum.
2. Eye-contact is like taking a wrecking ball to communication barriers
Two of my students thought it was funny to constantly maintain eye-contact with me during class, this creeped me out, but quite possibly not for the reasons they may think.
It just made me realize, more than otherwise, that there’s a whole person to a person, with a complete history, emotional life and many different aspects that remain hidden. I know we couldn’t function if we would always spread out our entire soul out on the table in front of us for everyone to see, but when someone deliberately maintains eye contact with you, and you inevitably get a much clearer, infinitely more genuine impression of what that person is like, it becomes hard to maintain functional superficiality.
Functional superficiality, is that not how we could describe most human interactions?
I not much of a fan of functional superficiality, I abhor small talk, but I guess we can’t take a tour in each other’s emotional labyrinth 24/7.
3 There’s no money in teaching
This has two potential effects:
A. Only people who aren’t hired for well paying jobs end up teaching
B. Only people with a calling for teaching end up teaching, regardless of the poor financial incentive
It would be nice to keep category B on board and to raise their salaries, without attracting a now non-existing category C of people who are drawn to teaching purely for the financial incentive.
4. When you love someone you defend them
Maybe I have this a bit more, because of my name. Nomen est omen. William or Wilhelm means Willful Protector. In my entire adult life I have gotten only into one fight and it was to stop a guy from beating the crap out of his girlfriend. He could have easily beaten the crap out of me too, but he just threw me across the room and walked away.
In day to day life is in the little human interactions that you defend your loved ones. A remark that you feel needs ‘redress’, small things, but revealing.
5. In my ideal high school…
…students and teachers would both live on campus and socialize in the evenings, the headmaster would still be teaching, boards of alumni would decide on the curriculum, connection, building emotional muscle and intelligence would be the top priority, students would get a lot more movement, they would truly work hard, play hard, students would be given the incentives to WANT to excell and become self-actualized individuals because they would see the benefits immediately, all electronic devices would be unaccessible after 22 pm unless in case of an emergency, all teachers would be in therapy or one on one supervision with a therapist, students would start the day working out (preferably running or rowing), there would be lots of guest speakers with experience ‘in the field’, there would be a sizeable body of exchange students, students would be encouraged to run a business of some kind, there would be animals on campus, including space for bee keeping, the school would function as a partly self-sufficient village run by students, teachers and staff, languages would mostly be taught through intense immersion and less with ridiculously unwordly grammar exercises, subjects would overlap as much as possible, self-study would be encouraged, students would learn how to learn, the innate human curiosity that kids have would somehow be maintained, students would be part of the political life of the school, there would be a uniform available, but students would not be required to wear it, it would be optional. Teachers would operate in teaching duos, tandems, who would be friends and compatible, making each other a complete educational unit, since I do not think any teacher has ALL the required skills to be a consummate teacher, the requirements are simply to diverse for any one individual to have them all. And so on and on.