It’s hard to imagine that teaching would be anything but fun. You’re around children with endless imaginations all day. Naivety leads to hilarity and you learn how to ‘whip’ and ‘nae nae’. Unfortunately, all is not as it seems from the outside. The inside of teaching is very VERY different.
The classroom isn’t the problem, neither is the class. No, your class are amazing and being a part of their growth and development is a privilege. The tiniest shred of progress can leave you clapping for joy, proudness can sometimes overwhelm you. You can laugh so much with the children that your belly literally hurts, just like you laughed when you were a kid (not many people can say their job gives them the opportunity to have that). You recycle the same old jokes from when you were a kid and everyone is laughing along. You’re filling heads with wonder and amazement, trying to be interactive and fun without letting the children know their actually learning.
Except outside of the classroom it’s piles of papers, meetings, marking, next steps, planning, resource making, filling out data, report writing, more meetings…until you’re taking work home and spilling paperwork into the next day, week, year. The to-do list is endless and the passion begins to fade. Teachers are under too much strain, from parents, from senior leaders, from the government, from their teams and from themselves! There’s so many rules, so many ‘don’t do this’ and ‘definitely do NOT do that’. Why do we all have to be ‘they’re all made out of ticky tacky and they all look just the same’?
With so much negativity around teaching, it is difficult to remember the reasons why teaching is the best profession…so here are ten reason why it is amazing.
- The children – it’s cliche, but it’s true. The children all have different characters and are all capable of different amazing things. They make us laugh, they make us cry and they make us proud day in, day out.
- The challenge – because each child is different it brings about different challenges, we strive to make ourselves better and act as rubber so we can mould ourselves to make the curriculum accessible to every child. We continually build, train and expand our knowledge so that we can be better and we can be the best for the children. And some children…well…they’re more tricky than others.
- Every day is different, each day brings something new.
- Building strong relationships with your children and getting to know them as individuals. Realising that these little brains are magnificent and they will one day flourish into amazing people.
- Knowing you were apart of their growth. They may not always remember you, you may not be their favourite – but for that little, short while, you were a part of helping them grow and change and you helped set those foundations.
- Those lightbulb moments, that moment when a child who was struggling (or an entire class) … simply…just click…BING. They understand it. You get to see the way their faces light up. That is a feeling you could not buy.
- The ridiculous things children say. You go home laughing and share stories with your friends who are in stitches because children are genuinely the most hilarious creatures on earth.
- The hundred of drawings you get given that were drawn just for you. You plaster your desk in them because each one is a treasured memory and the children want to give something back, not because you asked but because they WANTED to.
- When children identify your classroom as a safe place. They aren’t afraid to take risks and challenge themselves. When they need help, they know they can come to you. You created that environment!
- Seeing children begin to help each other. It could be helping a friend answer a question, giving them encouragement or a hug in the playground. Either way, it’s the cutest thing ever and it melts the heart. Even thinking about it makes me smile.
It’s important to remember these things so we don’t get disheartened and we don’t give up. So what about you – what’s the best thing about your job?