Why do teachers teach?
My teaching experience
If teaching is stressful, financially less rewarding, why do teachers teach? It is a legitimate question!
In the beginning
I remember being forced to be a teacher. For a poor young person with no other alternatives to earn a living, teaching was the only solution. At that time, in my home country (Morocco), the only way for a graduate to find a job was to enroll in public utility jobs. The opportunities were slim. So I passed an entrance exam with flying colors and was appointed in a very far rural area in the south of Morocco.
Immediately after I started to wonder whether I was made for that job! The answer was yes and no. Yes, because teaching has given me an opportunity :
- To learn for the rest of my life. Teaching is an open source of learning experiences. I was willing to learn.
- To stay in touch with the youth.
I also thought that teaching was not my cup of tea as it is:
- not really financially rewarding
- very tiring and stressful
But why am I still sticking to the profession?
That’s because my insights about the job have changed enormously!
- Teaching is not about money.
- Teaching needs a generous heart; one which gives without waiting to be rewarded. Selfish people can never be good teachers. Altruism is a key element in the profession.
- It is a gift before it is an art.
- It is about experiencing a variety of situations. Every session, every lesson , every student is unique.
- Teaching is about learning. A teacher is an eternal learner.
- Teaching is about communication.
- Teaching is about sensitivity. A person without the ability to sympathize, empathize, and listen will be a failure in the job.