Publicado el 01/25/2007 1:06 PM EST
Everything I Need to Know about Life Is Taught by My Students
By Durhl Caussey
Teaching is a job I take very seriously. Monetary rewards are not particularly great, but outside resources are sufficient to make life comfortable.
Today, the teaching profession is not as revered or appreciated as it once was in America. Teacher shortages exist throughout the country, and parent cooperation with teachers has declined in direct proportion to increases in school violence and decreased academic scores.
So why do we teachers continue to stay in the classroom, if it doesn’t pay well and is not held in high social regard?
If you were to ask a dozen teachers that question, you would get a dozen different reasons.
Personally, I stay in education because of what I learn each day in the classroom. Yes, I impart knowledge, but what I get back is more than facts, names, and events. I teach the academics of learning with maps, books, charts, computers, over-head projectors, and numerous other tools. But things like patience, love, honor, patriotism, faith, forgiveness, and a host of other life skills are best taught through example.
Although I fall terribly short, and make awful mistakes in teaching those values, my own personal growth is elevated by what my students teach me through their example.
I have found that knowledge retention increases euphorically when enthusiasm and tenderness are administered in a safe and non-threatening environment. This state of openness positions children to learn. This learning curve expands so dramatically it takes on the characteristics of a great tsunami that washes over the teacher and the students.
As the teacher grows, knowledge is dispensed like a lighthouse would its brilliance . . . knowledge that would keep children off the rocks of ignorance.
In the stillness and quiet of the classroom, the heartbeat for growth permeates the atmosphere with learning, which allows drops of success to fall into the crevices of once unreceptive minds.
Each day my students teach me through shared osmosis, helping me to grow despite my limitations. They quickly forgive my misdeeds and never threaten my easily bruised ego.
Hard work mixed in the bowl of patience, blended with love and imagination will teach reading and math better and faster than any educational techniques recognized by academic scholars.
My students are very sensitive to any mood, temperament, or emotion that I display. They want so desperately to please and be loved that learning seems a small price to pay to receive this nourishment in such abundance.
The typical history class is comprised of 17 to 30 students and as many teachers. As one student teaches another student, their own skills are sharpened and their self-esteem grows along with the knowledge learned from the teaching experience.
Each day my students teach me more than I teach them. The more I learn, the more I have to give back to them. I teach them the history of people and events. They teach about life and how better to understand myself.
Durhl Caussey writes a column for numerous papers in the United States, and soon to be read in Europe and Asia. He may be reached at this paper or Fax # 972-709-6989 or email@example.com.