What rewards should I expect as a teacher?

We have often heard or read that “teaching is a profession that creates other professions”. Having read this, it compels one to think that teaching is above all other profession as it is the creator of other professions. The concept behind this saying could be that since teaching involves making one learn and think creatively the birth of all other channels start from here. There is also another punch line about teaching as said by Donald D. Quinn, that “if a doctor, lawyer or dentist had Fourty people in his office at one time, all of who had different needs and some of whom didn’t want to be there and were causing trouble, and the doctor, lawyer or dentist without assistance, had to treat them all with professional excellence for nine months, then he might have some conception of the class room teachers job.” Having read this one would definitely fall for a teacher and would have much consideration for the job performed by the teacher.

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Combining the above two punch lines about teaching or teacher, one would definitely think teaching as being above all other tasks of the world and being a teacher means having the best job. Considering it a fact for a while, now if we look on to the rewards aspect of a teacher and that if teaching is a profession that creates all other profession than can we assume that the rewards to a teacher would be better than that of all other professionals? How far it is better to think like that and how far is it true? Are teachers being paid properly? Does a teacher earn substantially to cater to the daily needs of the family? Recently on 5th of September being a teachers day, there was an article in TOI, where in a bare fact were exposed about the meager salary the teachers are paid and the tasks to be performed. If one reads such article then that would compel them to think teaching as the least paid job and a job that one would not prefer to do.

The core question is, what rewards should I expect as a teacher? Again at this point I would like to post what one of my colleague regularly comments, “with the present salary how can one afford to affect and influence the students to be better?” . The question is not what amount of salary should a teacher be paid or What a teacher should be earning?, the question is “Being a teacher what rewards should I expect?”

A common question again argues the above logic that “is reward only monetary in nature?” can rewards be non monetary as well? And should one count on Non Monetary rewards of a profession? – especially a teaching profession.

Going through the internet for finding what rewards the teachers at other places in India and world are getting, I came across this wonderful article on www.teachercertification.org where the rewards of being a teacher are so nicely segregated. Every profession has monetary and non monetary rewards associated with it but teaching is such a profession where one would earn rewards that are non monetary in nature more that that of monetary nature. Let us understand what rewards should I expect as a teacher?:

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Earning for time contribution

One should definitely negotiate for the right salary that one deserves but the salary earned such will only be a remuneration against the time contributed by the candidate and the work put in during such time. One cannot and should not expect emoluments like commission if x number of students pass out with 90% or if y number of students are retained in the school.

A teachers job is to teach and not to sell, so one should not expect commission like a salesman does, however if one does think on that ground than yes you are earning your commission but inform of respect and recognition of the tasks done by you.

Being with Children, one of the purest elements in the world:

Unlike other professions and jobs where one deals with dead stock and materials, a teacher is with live stock and that too innocent children that are one of the finest and purest elements of the world blessed with beauty and creativity. It is only the privilege of a teacher to be with one of the finest creations of Mother Nature, the kids. How lovely it is to be in the company of kids and observe them learn their basic skills step by step. This one of the finest rewards of being a teacher that is to be in the company of kids, innocence and purity which is like being next to God. No ill speaking, no competition, no stressful conditions or deadlines as they have in every other task. It’s worth enjoying every moment of being with them and observing them grow with your cooperation and support.

Observing children learning what is taught, in a way seeing your efforts realized

One of the other finest rewards of being a teacher is seeing knowledge and skill being implemented from day one that it is taught to them. It is really a wonderful experience observing kids talking in recess and while going home that today we are taught this topic in the class and the teacher wonderfully made us learn that topic. No other field or job gives such a real time experience for the efforts put in by the candidate. One should really feel proud of this element of being a teacher that where the parents fail to make their own children learn basic skills of life a teacher on the contrary succeeds in making them learn even to honour the parents and their instructions. Observing kids instilling complete confidence and faith in you being their teacher is one of the best rewards that can be expected by any other professional or task doer. As a teacher you must enjoy this privilege and make the right use of it in forming and cultivating better habits in the children the future citizen of the nation.

Command over the class and group

As a teacher one would definitely enjoy the privilege of having complete command over the class. The teacher is the Master / Mentor / Commander of the class, the class will not only peacefully take the commands but will make their best possible efforts to fulfill the command with necessary skill and willingness. Where in the world would one enjoy such a blissful state of honor and respect towards the spoken instruction of a teacher? A thoughtful teacher is always at the center of the class’s attraction, the teacher like a commander of the ship drives the class through the ocean of knowledge, safely maneuvering the stake holders to better pastures or land. Being in charge of the class or the group is one of the finest achievements of being a teacher and one should take the maximum advantage to deliver the best of the knowledge and thinking to the class.

Respect for being a teacher

One would surely agree to this. Coming across a student in the market or any place other than the class is such a welcoming experience where in the midst of the crowd the teacher is blissfully respected and greeted and this is all out of having respect towards the teacher. I do remember having come across students who have settled with their job or profession happy to welcome their teacher and not only warmly greeting but also offering whatever services they could offer as a respect towards the teacher. It’s really a blissful experience having such recognition of human values.

Recognition as a teacher throughout the life

No matter how long you have taught a student i.e. for what ever time duration but you will always be a teacher in their eyes and you will always earn that respect and gratitude throughout your life. Once you are introduced as a teacher in a class you almost start enjoying supremacy over the class the moment you are introduced as teacher, now it’s your onus to earn respect out of the introduction and through your lively inputs in the class. A teacher enjoys a perennial recognition throughout the life. A teacher will always be respected by the student no matter how old he or she becomes. Not only this, but you will always be treated in priority if you happen to require their service. Also, its not only the student that honors you with such respect and salutations but the entire family of the student shows deep gratitude towards the teacher as it is the teacher that has handled their most precious and valuable belonging just like her own and has returned back a more better and refined individual than that was originally handed over. Thus a teacher will always enjoy a perennial recognition through out the life.

Self esteem – Self – Satisfaction

More than any other reward is the reward of self satisfaction and esteem that one would collectively enjoy at the later years of ones job or profession as a teacher. It feels better and counts more having contributed in the development of a skilled and developed mind to the society and the families. No other reward comes near to the reward of having self satisfaction of being a teacher. A true teacher by heart will always try to bring the best in her students and this art and hard work of the teacher has priceless contribution to the society and the family. A teacher will feel proud when she finds her students excelling in the examination of their life. A teacher will feel proud when she finds her students performing the best in their profession and generating the best in their work. A teacher will feel proud when she finds her students achieve better results in all the tasks that they perform.

This feeling of pride is the self esteem and self satisfaction that no other job can provide and one must work with holistic approach and all round development of the child in mind to achieve this self esteem.

Thus, we can very well understand from the above paragraphs that a teacher earns more of non monetary rewards as compared to monetary accumulation of wealth. The children are the true wealth of the society and the nation and who can be wealthier than a teacher that is always surrounded by such a wealth that grows by itself. Indeed a teacher is wealthier than any other person as it is a teacher that is offered the most priceless element of the world ‘The child’.

I would really suggest, all the prospective teachers with this article that please consider you blessed by having yourself in the teaching field or rather a teacher. Do not work for the rewards but rather work for the holistic approach and over all development of the child and believe me your rewards will follow you anywhere you go.

Congratulations! For being a teacher, a creator or wealth, a creator or skilled power, a creator disciplined citizens, a creator of the nation.

Let’s be the Master of Technology and not it’s Slave

Technology has penetrated in most of the activities and livelihood of human beings. With the penetration of technology there has been tremendous change in the method of work and activities of people. Technology has helped reduce cumbersome tasks, increase speed of transactions, eased the tasks of repetitive nature, helped people to forecast the output of efforts and has assisted at almost all places like a personal assistant.

Earlier while the penetration of technology was in its inception, it was taken as innovation and means of modernization. People using technology were considered as affluent, rich and forward minded as cost of using technology was not everyone’s cup of tea. Utilization of technology was limited to productive and business tasks. Transactions of business houses were doubled or multiplied more than couple of times with the advent of technology. The out put, capacity, productivity and over all transactions of business house increased.

Technology earlier was considered as a boon for business and it found its place amongst the business houses. However, technology has not kept itself limited to business houses it has expanded itself from production to trading, transport, printing and publication, marketing, distribution channels, Accounting and finance, science and medicine, research and development and what not.

The major shift came in the life of people when technology found itself in communication. With the advent of technology in communication the use of it grew from production houses to common people. With modern day technology in communication, the speed and volumes of communication has increased manifold. People are making use of technology for calling, texting, messaging, post updates, feedbacks, opinions, post notes, social communication, mass communication, personal communication, etc.

The second major shift came in the life of people when technology entered the field of education. Officially technology entered the class rooms and is taught to the innocent minds. Use of computers has eased the understanding of people. The method of teaching has changed from boring lectures to entertaining multimedia houses. The means of teaching that was limited to a classroom expanded by continents through virtual class room concepts. People came more close to each other by use of technology and more of expertise could be shared with larger audiences with the means of technology.

Technology has supported growth, productivity and elevated lifestyles of people all over the globe. The world is becoming a global village with use of technology.

As every coin has other side, likewise technology has its own adverse effects. Use of technology has eased our lifestyles but has also made us dependent on it. People who used to remember important dates of birthdays and anniversaries have started make use of silly applications to keep reminders about it. People that used to prioritize the work and verbal communication have started making use of communication devises lavishly and have started disturbing each other over petty matters. In turn, technology has made us dependent on it and has diminished our productivity in lieu of boosting it. People have stopped using brains and have started over use of gadgets. Common Sense has now become a productivity tool rather than foundation of logic in one’s mind. People have stopped using intelligence within oneself and have started to use artificial intelligence found in gadgets, devices and software. Overall, technology has made us Slaves of it. We are too much dependent on mobile phones, computers, calculators and such modern gadgets that we avoid making effort even where required. Sincerely, I would not bother to switch of lights or fans if it could be put on timers or controlled by a remote device. This is what is going to be hazardous on the long run. Rather it has started showing its ill effects. More and more people are becoming obese, more and more kids are becoming hyper active and indulging in disastrous activities rather than constructive, innocent and creative activities. We have more people suffering from partial or total dementia (memory loss) in the 21st century as compared to earlier days. People have started eating according to the calorie value rather than to satisfy the hunger. Students have found out ways to photocopy, share or cut paste rather than creating or recreating the material. People have started use of call communication over mobile phones for silly matters like shopping rather than making a list and taking effort to jot down the requirements. In one way or the other we are getting enslaved by the use of technology.

Just imagine what would happen if due to some reason we are deprived of electricity for few hours or days. Just imagine what would happen if due to some reasons the world servers got hanged for few hours or days. Just imagine what would happen if we just got back into the past where such technology was not there. Just imagine if WhatsApp and Face book force closed their operations. Nobody can imagine the answers of these questions. A simple imagination itself will create silence and put a halt on the activity that we are doing presently.

It’s time we put halt on dependence on technology. Let’s learn to be Masters of Technology and not its Slave. Master here is in the sense of possession and not as expertise of technology. It is we who should possess technology and not us that should get possessed by technology. It is we, who should be using technology for our comforts and ease of transaction and not technology that should be using us in lieu of making systematic transactions.

=The next question is how to proceed ahead to become Master of technology and not slave? The answer is very simple; delimit the use of technology in day to day life. Value life and livelihood events more than the use of technology, give priority to the person present in front of you than the person at a far distance and over phone. Value the face more than face book. Have consideration for physical presence of person and be sensitive towards the real needs rather than pseudo wants. Ask relevant questions and pass only necessary information rather than gossiping or chit chatting over WhatsApp. These communication mediums were introduced to decrease gap and increase proximity but not to increase gap with near ones. Set out your priorities in the right direction and as per the weightage of relation and do not burden the relation due to directionless use of technology. Naturally, your family members value more than the things you possess. Do not compromise the amount of time you spend with your family members and friends in real, rather over spending on the ones that are not with you. Make logical use of technology and not illogical and over use. Let’s not be multitasking always, give some tasks in your life more priority and be single tasking when such task is to be performed. Take the pleasure of food by dining together with family rather than focusing on news on TV or any other entertaining program.

One can mark hours in a day when not to use technology and be away from such side effects for that time period. One should set timings where he/she will switch off the mobile phones, shut down the TV and spent some time with family and near ones. As Warren Buffet commented, “If you spend on unnecessary things then a day will come that you will have to loose that is necessary.” Likewise, if one makes over and unnecessary use of technology than one will have to loose that is necessary and requires attention. After all, technology was invented to ease the errands of life and give us comfort and happiness, but not to increase our discomfort or hassles. Thus, we should try to make necessary use of technology and not to get possessed by it. Traditions should be set in family for togetherness and to stay away from the perils of technology. Teachers should take the initiative to guide the next generation for the perils and overuse of technology and social media. Rather than stopping those to use technology teachers should guide them to make right and proper use of technology. As individuals one should exercise control and monitor use of social media, TV, and such gadgets in regular life. The list of such suggestions is exhaustive and cannot be generalized. One cannot suggest others on how to delimit their dependence on gadgets and technology. It can only be exercised with willingness and will power of the one own self.

In general we should control our temptations and implement schedules to use technology so as to enable our Master Hood over technology. Lastly, its time we put halt on the over use of technology and start focusing on what Gandhi, the father of Nation suggested, “Limit your requirements and do your work your own self.”

Strategies for a Teacher

Teaching is the profession that teaches all the other professions”.

How true and subtle the statement is! This was only realized when I became a teacher some ten years ago. But the journey is wonderful and full of surprises. Certainly yes, because every moment of teaching has stored what next? Kind of feeling. This makes the teaching job an interesting and ever aspiring one.

Being an English teacher, I am always privileged to make my class very interesting. Be it a story writing class or a grammar class, be it an activity class or listening class – I just enjoy it. With years my profession has allowed me to evolve. The theory of evolution rightly works. There are certain secrets which this profession has unfolded and I believe that if they are shared they will definitely create wonders for all the teachers. Teaching is a profession where you deal with living beings and not the machines so it becomes challenging at times. The most difficult part of this job is Classroom Management and the task is easy if small but effective strategies are followed. These are a few strategies that I try to follow:

  • Begin your class with a smile
  • Stop excusing and commit to right.
  • Keep your temperament cool in any extreme condition. Take deep breathe to stay calm.
  • Keep surprise element in your teaching.
  • Plan your lesson plan thoroughly.
  • Let the surrounding be clean and student friendly.
  • Let them decide the rules of the classroom.
  • Monitor them. Don’t mind them.
  • Make all the concepts simple and easy to comprehend.
  • Don’t label the child. You may be proved wrong.
  • Misbehavior must be dealt on the basis of one to one connection.
  • Let a student of your class be a model for all of them and not an unknown and imaginary character who hardly exist.
  • Be consistent.
  • Tell them you do care for them.

Let’s not forget “ Who dares to teach must never cease to learn.

Rising New Generation Kids

A nation’s progress is judged by educational standards. It is a teacher who can raise the level of education to great heights—Swamy Vivekananda.

As a teacher I feel the future of India lies in the hands of the present generation. Today’s students are under tremendous pressure, to achieve ranks in this ever-changing competitive world. Single parentings, only child, pressure from peers, educational pressure from family etc are a few reasons that are affecting students mentally. Educational institutions and the parents should give importance to all round development of the child. A child should be given chance to grow in the field of his/her interest, should be given chance to learn Life Skills, should be free from fear of learning and most importantly education should be student centered but not teacher centered. There should be some change expected in a teacher’s way of thinking too. Mainly a teacher should be a role model to the student. Teachers should develop moral, emotional, ethical and cultural values among the students. Parents should support their ward’s needs and understand that children need their presence but not presents. Present generation is lacking some of the important skills in their life such as communication skills, creativity, curiosity, critical thinking, Information and Media Literacy Skills, Problem identification and Problem solving skills, self-direction and self-responsibility.

The world is changing faster than it ever had in the past. Family values, the socio-economic nations, the world order are all changing rapidly. However, a teacher seems to provide an anchor of stability. Playing a vital role in molding a child’s character and personality, gives a Teacher should be a dynamic and creative person to mould the children in a proper shape. It is the duty of the teacher to be a friend, philosopher and guide to recognize children with various abilities. A teacher, to be successful in her profession, should plan her teaching lessons in different methods. A degree in education does not make a teacher. Love for the profession does.   A responsible attitude with good communication skills and ability to inspire students to grow are the traits a teacher needs to inculcate.

‘A real teacher is not like a brick that falls on the ground and makes an impression of itself on the earth, but, a teacher is like the sky that allows everything on the earth to grow to its maximum potential, showing a way, but not forcing it.’ – Anonymous.

The reward for a teacher goes much beyond the material world, it is an emotional a teacher develops with his/her student which makes this profession so special. Teacher is a person who influences the life of a student to a greater extent than any other factor. The fore most duty of a teacher is to enhance the student’s talent by taping their inner skills.

As a facilitator of learning, the teacher’s role is to handle the different ideas, discuss them in detail and explain so that the students get a proper understanding of the concerned topic. A teacher should encourage the students to work well with others, make thoughtful decisions, take initiative and solve complex problems. Teacher is instrumental for the student’s development and success.

Parents and teachers should encourage students to develop 21st century skills and become vulnerable citizens of India. These representatives of India will definitely fly our flag high. Young generation also must understand the importance of time, value for money, respect for country, self discipline, family bonding and last but not least our great cultural values.

Technology Gadgets are Tools in Education

We live in a techno world, having accepted and changed a lot from the primitive age according to the developments around, for our better existence. But, a very slow or no change in our education systems has occurred since then.

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Even today, students carry a load on their back or drag on wheels. Even today, teachers complain about incomplete notes and home work. Even today, parents complain about correction and circulars. Use technology in education system to sync all three together.

“The Happy We”

For a successful student it is very important to link two vital caretakers in no way leading to any communication gap. To stay safe and happy to face the future in the most best way possible. The one and only tool to help him do this is by the latest technology which is easily available to him in his day to day life.

Yes, the mobile phone, his laptop, tablet or a personal computer should be synced to synchronies this precious relationship between his teacher, parent and himself. This is for all the schools reading this article and for those who care about their Childs valuable period of life.

Every student once enrolled should be given a user id and a password for it to be used in his schools internal website. This internal website will be modified according to that specific students academics only. All loaded with the required applications for that specific academic year and would be upgraded once he is promoted to the next class. He would find all the things handy in just a touch of a button, listing from his text book, class work, home work, dictionary, encyclopedia, educational games, and internet with a parent-teacher control.

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This web would be designed in a very attractive and also in a user-friendly pattern that every student would love to complete his work on time. Students will have online submissions, online exams with time limit and deadlines, which will be closed as per the duration. So the corrections also will be done automatically on time without any mistakes and will generate a progress report accordingly.

Every activity done on this web would be updated to his parents through mobile as a message according to their time settings, hourly or daily once as per their requirements. This website will be accessible even from home so that it facilitates the parent’s direct intervention to look into a detailed progress of their child and to keep them updated with no information left behind or forgotten by their tot.

Therefore, from now on student will not require to carry tons of books on their back, teachers will not complain about incomplete notes or home work and parents will not complain about corrections and circulars. Everyone will be informed about everything at every time “The Happy We”.