Every year, my kids plan and make their own teachers’ day gifts. I was delighted to see that despite it being her first teachers day in a big school, Kate had already prepared her own handmade cards and simple gifts and they were all packed and ready to go. She only needed help to write out the greetings for her chinese teacher in chinese characters.
The teens made super yummy chocolate cookies and brownies for their teachers, but what really took me by surprise was how one of them spoke about her teachers.
“I’m going to give to Ms xxx, Mrs xxx, etc…
As for Mr xx, we don’t really like him. He scolds us a lot, can’t teach well and we don’t understand his explanations.”
I was expecting her not to pack any for him.
“But… I know he has good intentions, so I’m also going to make him some.”
Teenagers (and sometimes even us adults) tend to think about how WE have been treated and we react and respond the same way.
To be able to look beyond that, to see the INTENTION of another person and be grateful, that takes maturity and wisdom.
I am so proud of how this child has blossomed in her character.
Now that I am running my own enrichment centre and have gone through thick and thin with my teachers, words cannot describe how appreciative I am for all the teachers out there who are giving so much of themselves day in and day out, to guide, nurture and inspire a whole generation of children.
Being a teacher entails more than just a straightforward task of teaching. It’s not the abcs that children are lacking in. Teachers today have to teach children how to respect others, how to cooperate and work together amicably, how to persevere and not give up when things don’t go their way, how to manage their emotions and even basic manners.
Many a times, parents are asking teachers to step in when they find it hard to understand or get through to their own children (I’ve been there). And we are not talking about 12 year old teens, but children as young as 5 or 6.
It is extremely tough to raise children in this day and age, and teachers are a crucial pillar of the village.
A mum shared with us how she has new-found respect for teachers after sitting in for a period in her P1 child’s class.
She was sitting at the back of the class and a student came up to her to strike a conversation with this new ‘auntie’. She asked the child to go back to her seat and pay attention to the teacher in front. In the span of 30 minutes, she witnessed how children were either chatting with their friends, looking out the window or distracted and in their own world, digging through their school bag or fiddling with stationery on the table.
It is not an easy task for a teacher to command the attention of all the students and to get them to focus on the topic at hand, as well as dealing with all the other issues that crop up with managing a class. Imagine doing that for 10 periods in a day, week after week, month after month. And we are not even talking about the extra responsibilities outside of class and liaison with parents.
When I attended my son’s PTM last week, his teachers and I were discussing how 1 very naughty student was affecting many of the students in class. At the end of the meeting, they lamented that they are really worn out from the year, not only with teaching, but having to deal with disciplinary issues.
Teaching is indeed a calling. To soldier on and give of your best for the good of those entrusted to your care. For the little ones, to do what is right even though there is no one watching and the children are too young to relate what happens in the classroom. For the older students, to never give up on them even though they have a bad attitude and may have given up on themselves. To keep on doing your best for the child even though at times the parents may be giving you a hard time.
The influence of a teacher has the potential to reach far and wide, and to impact a child for life. When I see how my teachers light up when parents tell them how much their child has changed, how motivated and self-intiated they have become, it is clear that this simply is the reward that drives them.
For all the dedicated teachers our children have the privilege to encounter, Happy Teacher’s Day! Please know that many of us appreciate all that you do!