Pop Quiz: Advice To The Would Be’s
What do you want to be when you grow up? A simple question that adults ask young children. Some children want to be a fireman or a chef. Some will tell you they want to be (insert latest movie hero here) and some will say a teacher.
When I was asked I always answered that I wanted to be an astronaut who teaches flute on Mars. So I covered a lot of ground there. However, the teacher part was the main part of the answer because ever since I can remember that is what I wanted to be and it showed.
When I was young I played school and I was very serious about my play time too. I had desks, a chalkboard (thanks dad for building me a chalkboard) and my elementary teachers would give me their old books every year to use. I had a very convincing classroom when I played at home. I remember standing in front of my “class” taking roll and teaching the “students” the constellations in the sky on my chalkboard.
I grew up knowing that my life would circle around teaching. I tutored throughout my middle school – high school career. I was assistant to my dance teacher and even gave private music instruction to make money to help get me through my undergraduate degree. I taught a class a few times as an undergrad and always ended up as a T.A. in grad school. When I got out of grad school I made one phone call and landed a job teaching astronomy and physics at a college nearby. I think that it is obvious teaching is what I should do as a career.
Sometimes I get students who tell me that they are going to school to become a teacher. They ask me what advice I could give them to help them when they get that first class all to themselves. I never answer them right away without asking them a question first. The question is simple:
Why do you want to have teaching as a career?
If they say because they like kids and they want their summers off. I laugh and tell them to rethink their major. If they say they are inspired to help others better themselves or something along those lines then we have a much more in depth conversation. This brings me to the questions for you:
What advice do you give aspiring teachers? Have you ever told student to try a different field? What made you become a teacher?
The Pop Quiz is a question posed to you, the Scholars of Doubt. Look for it on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays in the afternoon (ET).