September usually marks the return to school for kids around the US. Returning to school after summer break is challenging not just for kids, but for parents and teachers too. Kids may be the ones going to school each day but the teachers and parents play very important roles in their education, roles that aren’t always appreciated or recognized. Today I want to focus on the teachers.
I’ve had some really good ones, some ones I’ve forgotten (that means they were average or unremarkable), and some that were bad. I don’t know if it is because of their age, the other kids in the class, the subject material, the environment or what, but some teachers just seem miserable. Much of this unfortunately has to do with all of the rules, regulations and things they need to remember and try to cram into the students before the end of the school year. It’s a lot of pressure but there isn’t necessarily a better way to do it and get all the information to the students before they’re 18 and thinking about families, jobs and the future.
But the good ones, they’re people that forever change you. They make you think happy thoughts even if most of your school memories were not happy. For me, there was my second grade teacher, and two in high school (a math and a history) that always stood out to me. That there are only 3 that I really learned from and am happy to remember out of all the teachers I had says something about our teachers.
I think we need to start by giving our teachers some slack for all they have to deal with and the pressure we put on them. It isn’t easy to manage all the kids, teach them something and follow the rules of the school or education system all at the same time and in such a time constraint, not to mention all the outside factors like personal life, kid’s parents and the world.
Second, we need to do a better job supporting and encouraging them. It’s important to tell them how much they matter and how much we appreciate what they do. We also need to make sure that they’re given the money to do their jobs well. Every kid doesn’t need a computer, but essentials like books and paper shouldn’t be scrimped on.
But just like the rest of us, teachers don’t have any right to be grumpy and miserable just because things aren’t easy or perfect. Our world doesn’t usually work that way, usually we all need to stand up for the important things. Let’s stand up this week for our teachers.
“I’m embarrassed every time I look a teacher in the eye, because we ask them to do so much for so little.” Phil McGraw