One day, my mom got back from school exhausted and had to take a nap because she was so tired. Immediately she woke up, she started preparing dinner, and after preparing dinner, she brought out her books, laptop, and everything that could help and started preparing lessons.
Yes, she is a teacher, and she has been a teacher all her life, helping students to learn and acquire knowledge. She is a dutiful teacher, and she follows the school rules, prepares lessons according to the agreed circular, gives lectures to the students, and assesses the students’ progress. Considering what teachers do and how they help students learn, I feel they should be the most paid and respectable workers, which is not so, and it makes me wonder: what are some reasons not to be a teacher?
Without any doubt, there are many good reasons to be a teacher, like getting to impact knowledge on the students, having the summer off, and having a good pension and job security. Unfortunately, there are also many disadvantages to becoming a teacher that many outside of the profession do not realize, and so many teachers believe that the bad overshadows the good.
Some of the reasons not to be a teacher include the fact that it offers low hourly wages despite the educational requirement, the workload is heavy, and the profession receives little respect from society.
Reasons Not to Be a Teacher
Teaching is one of the lowest paying jobs requiring an advanced degree. Normally, teachers make 15% less than other people with similar education and workload. Teachers have one of the lowest hourly wages of those with equivalent education, even if they consider the time off during summer.
Some people become teachers because of the time off during summer. In comparison, some do not even see it that way because they find themselves working second jobs or taking classes over the summer.
When school is in session, teachers work during the school day and then have extra grading and planning to do once the students have gone home. Some schools expect teachers to volunteer their time for after-school activities. These responsibilities can range from taking care of a school dance to coaching an after-school sports team.
Teaching is a very noble profession. In reality, teachers receive very little respect from society. Most times, students dislike teachers, and parents do not trust them. Many students indelibly do not want to be in the classroom and will make it clear.
Parents who wish to give the best education to their children will question a teacher’s decision and teaching technique if their child is displeased with learning at school.
Roles of a Teacher
Here are the five roles a teacher must fill to be the best educator they can be.
One of the top roles a teacher must fill is that of a resource expert. Many students come to the teacher to request information. Even if the student is only requesting a source of information, the teacher is the one who everyone presumes must know how to find answers to what the student is looking for.
If the teacher can find answers to the problem, he or she will be the one to instruct the student on how to use the solution.
A teacher must act as the support person when the student needs help because students are the ones who need support when learning a new skill or seeking a piece of information. Support can come in any form, such as a leader, coach, or counselor. A teacher can support another teacher taking a particular subject matter.
Students look up to teachers and may even direct their own behavior and work ethic to match the teacher. A teacher who has been in the profession for a long time can mentor a teacher who is just starting in the profession.
Teachers who help out with complex tasks in schools and are active will often have more jobs than those who were asked to perform. Usually, the teacher’s goal will match the direction that the school is taking.
Anyone who has been involved in a profession long enough knows that there is always something new to learn. A learner is a person who is continuously growing in life and will never claim that they know it all. A teacher will be challenged every day with tasks that will help them grow into a better person.
Challenges Teachers Face in the Classroom
- Understanding the different learning problems amongst students: No matter the class or student you are teaching, there will always be numerous sets of learning styles that request your attention. A teacher needs to think outside the box when it comes to meeting the needs of their learners.
- Lack of funding: One of the current educational problems teachers face today is the lack of funding. When schools encounter budget issues, the first thing to do is reduce pupil to teacher ratio, which immediately affects the scholars’ learning.
- Lack of effective communication: Every session, students are faced with the intimidating task of communicating their needs to teachers. While some kids can talk about what they want enjoyably and get what they need. So, a teacher needs to build trust with their students and work on their communication skills every day
- Being encouraging and motivating under challenging times: Teachers needs to know how to encourage their students when they are going through challenges such as loads of assignments and exams for the high school students and pen grips and ball skills for the preschool student
- Discipling students: You have to be careful of the way you go about dealing with disturbance and punishing students. Ill-mannered students can kill your love for teaching; it is not unexpected that you will meet students that lack good manners and are disrespectful; at the same time, you are rest assured to find delightful and respectful students in your class. Ways to confront lack of manners in the classroom are to execute justified effect, get to the origin of the matter, get the parents involved, and create intervention-interceding plans.
- Endless paperwork and extended working hours: Apart from teaching notes, individual assessments and tests need to be recorded, and it is usually a task that calls for prolonged working hours.
- Time management: Teaching job require you to be on your feet all day, and there is usually no time to rest. Especially when you are teaching elementary school, you have to help out with most things they learn to get used to it.
- Pressure from school administrators: Teaching has become a great competitor industry that needs teachers to always think outside the box. Competition pertains to those in school, with a lot of teachers feeling like they need to attain greater things every year.
- Burnout: It is not uncommon for teachers to experience burnout, because teaching is a very demanding profession.
Characteristics and Qualities of a Good Teacher
Even though every outstanding teacher has their own unique and special way, there are nine specific universal qualities that are necessary for anyone who wants to teach successfully, whether they want to teach in an elementary school or the university. If any teacher possesses any of these qualities, then he or she can become an outstanding teacher:
- Great communication skills.
- Excellent listening skills.
- Extensive knowledge and passion for their subject matter.
- Capability to build attentive relationships with students.
- Friendliness and approachability.
- Excellent preparation and organization skills.
- Powerful work conduct.
- Community building skills.
- High expectation for all.
Teachers have many responsibilities and play different roles in their students’ lives. They teach students educational and practical subjects, help develop them to become self-determining and executive individuals and citizens, serve as a role models, listen to their problems and proper possible solutions, widen their perceptions, and counsel them. Nonetheless, not all teachers act according to their responsibilities.
Unfortunately, at times some acts are professional and are charged with “misconduct.” Sometimes, due to one reason or another, either from other colleagues or the students, some teachers are wrongfully accused and severely punished for the misconduct. Teachers should not take misconduct slightly. A charge of misconduct may end in a severe penalty, which includes termination and carrying long-term negative repercussions for a teacher.
Teacher misconduct is often defined broadly by state law and normally includes, but is not restricted to the following:
- The keeping, moving or selling of regulated substances or illegal drugs or wrongful use of prescription drugs.
- Any sexual, abusive, neglectful, or improper behavior between a teacher and child.
- Any manipulation or alteration of official professional documentation (i.e., a certificate or license) to secure better employment, promotion, or salary.
- Commissioning or participating in illegal acts on school property or during school events.
- Any willful or unlawful use of school money or property.
- Any relations of a sexual or romantic nature between a teacher and child.
Most accusations of misconduct by a teacher, however, result in a local Board of Education, administrators, or principal making a limited inquiry. If they suspect that a teacher engaged in misconduct, a record of misconduct is made, and a proposed sanction is ordinarily offered to the teacher and placed in his or her file.
School officials may issue a verbal or written warning, a formal reprimand or a principal consult with the Central Administrative Office, Human Resources, or the school district’s lawyer and propose another sanction or punishment.