January 30, 2018, by Carla
Become a Teacher – Why on Earth Would You Do That?
By Stephen Sharkey, Project Coordinator
There is no denying that teaching is complex, challenging and, at times, can occupy a huge amount of your life. However, for six hours a day, you have the unique opportunity to spend time with young people who could make a difference to your life, as you do to theirs.
Why wouldn’t you want that?
There are so many positive things about becoming a teacher, but for the purpose of this blog, I’ve limited myself to just five key points:
1. Young people are hilarious
They each come with their own idiosyncrasies that provide for a rich and colourful learning environment. Teachers quickly learn the importance of fostering positive relationships with their pupils, which are sustained throughout the child’s time in education and, for many, far beyond. Watching a child grow and develop into a young adult is a privilege that not everyone gets to experience.
They may even laugh at your jokes…
2. You will never have a dull day
Every day is different. Each child is unique and they bring with them their individual ideas, thoughts, challenges, curiosities and perspectives on the world in which we live. So each class of around 30 young people provides a diverse, and often, eclectic mix of characters that will make each lesson of every day different.
Throw in the range of roles you will undertake each day – form tutor, class teacher, counsellor and negotiator – and you can guarantee that you will never, ever, be bored!
3. Every day is a school day, even for you…
By becoming a teacher, you will learn so much. Not only about teaching and learning, but about your subject and yourself. You may well think you know all there is to know about your subject, but you will be constantly surprised by a curve ball question a pupil might throw at you! These surprises will really challenge you to explore an area of your subject in greater depth.
You will learn how to communicate with a range of audiences from the young people you teach, to colleagues, parents and guardians, and other professionals working in education.
4. You can let your creative juices flow
While you will have a curriculum to follow, how you approach the teaching of that curriculum will be very much down to you. You can draw on your experiences and interests to bring your lessons to life. Think about something you love to do and work out how to bring it into your teaching. Through this you can make your lessons engaging and relevant to young people. You will become a curator of teaching ideas by connecting with other professionals in the field, either in the workplace or through teacher events and social media.
5. Last but by no means least… You will make a massive difference to so many children
Our young people need dedicated and committed individuals to help them fulfil their dreams. Inspirational teachers are vital for our society. Teachers foster a love of their subjects and encourage young people to continue to learn. Just think about what, or more importantly, who, made you want to carry on with your studies. However, a teacher’s influence extends beyond the classroom. Through their interactions with their pupils, teachers help shape the person they will ultimately become.
There is no denying the benefit that teaching brings to the lives of so many individuals, including your own. However, as I began this blog, it is challenging and hard work. To enter this industry you have got to be strong willed, immensely dedicated and willing to go the extra mile. If you can combine these attributes with your passion and enthusiasm for the role, you will make you an amazing teacher.
Considering going into teaching? You can explore this role in more detail on our website. To hear more about the different routes into teaching, and to talk to graduates who have taken this path, come along to our Spotlight On: Teaching on Thursday 15 February.
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