The blog I hope everyone reads is linked above this.
If you can read, it’s because you had a teacher.
If you are a doctor, a lawyer, a politician, a salesman, a business executive, a fireman, a veteran, a soldier, a bar tender, a taxi driver, or any body else that uses math, reading, science, art, dance, or speaking to the public in your career – somebody taught you how to.
You have the career you have because you were taught the skills you need by someone who knew what you needed to know to get there. From basic reading, writing and addition to complex algorithms, legalities, technical writing, and photonic wave alignment, you were taught what you needed by a series of teachers.
People who dedicate their lives, before during and after school hours, to making sure that they teach what is needed. We think about individual students and how we can demonstrate material so that the group gets it and that one that needs extra help can also get it.
We fill out reports that require us to KNOW our students in ways that no one else does. We spend the majority of their productive waking hours with them. We know their learning styles. We try to figure out how much external vs internal motivation is needed to help a student progress to their greatest capacity. We share in their forming dreams and plans for their future. And we see how they behave in social situations that only occur at school, the biggest social influence on their lives.
We call them “our kids” because they are. Every day, not just when the bad guys come around. If you’ve ever known a teacher you know it’s hard to get a conversation in that doesn’t somehow include a teaching experience. Every class, every child, is on our minds all the time. How can we help them be their best?
To all of you that make $100,000+ and look down on us “babysitters”, remember you have that job because we did ours. You were protected even if no one actually came in shooting, your teachers would have protected you if there had been a situation. You were kept safe, you were taught, you were nurtured and cared about.
Look back as an adult, and try to look at your class experiences as an adult without the normal childhood, adolescent angst and rebellious influence. You will see that the teachers in your life, whether or not they “graded fairly” would have put their lives on the line if someone threatened their classroom.
You have the ability to be great because your teachers gave you the tools, the confidence, and the practice needed to push yourself to your own greatness.
And remember that real teachers have always deserved the respect.