It's mid semester for me, as possibly it may be for many other educators. Often students are given the opportunity to voice their feedback of a teacher either in the middle of the semester or at the end, and as many educators well know, those questionnaires not always distinguish between the teacher him/herself and the subject they are teaching.
However, as I consider what I will be doing over the next weeks, plotting and planning lessons and activities, I also wonder about the relevance of what we educators do. Sure, we teach maths, reading, writing. Often, I find myself teaching other things which do not come in pedagogical books - saying please and thank you is important, washing hands regularly is necessary, closing the door instead of letting it bang is good manners and of course, a great deal of focus on digital literacies.
Like coral sand, so much happens in classrooms. No matter how neatly a lesson may be planned, there will be adjustments to be made, students' mood and reactions to take into consideration. Back-ups and flexibility are key - and let's not even begin talking about technological glitches!
And yet I wonder....
At the end of the day, what difference have I made? As I see my students mature and become more confident learners, what role did I have in that process? Do educators actually have any influence in learning processes?
There are times when the world of education is a world of magic, a world where all is possible, unlimited creativity, unforgettable moments of success, the smiles I see as students feel confident with themselves and their productivity. No. Not always an easy journey. But then again, what is?
Is being a teacher inventing the impossible? Would a teacher make a difference then?
What do you think makes a great teacher?
How do you make a difference?
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