I have been teaching for almost three years now but I never knew there’s such a thing as Teacher‘s Day until I logged in my facebook tonight and saw some of my former students‘ greetings posted on my wall. Immediately, I typed in google’s search box the words, Teacher’s Day, to familiarize myself with it.
A brobdingnagian thanks to my students who informed me about such special day intended for the appreciation of teachers; World Teachers’ Day. Said special day is celebrated across the world on October 5 annually ever since the importance of teachers was already recognized by UNESCO. It includes celebrations to honor the teachers for their special contribution in a particular field area or the community in general.
In relation to this special day, I decided to share what some of my students for this ongoing semester answered in my equally special essay questions a week ago. These questions are intended to elicit honest answers from my students as one way of improving my delivery of classroom instruction. I am aware that I still have a lot to learn as far as the latter is concerned, so I think “the special questions” below will help me keep the positive traits that are liked by the students and to improve upon the shortcomings.
1. What is the most important lesson you learned from me?
2. What do you hate most about me?
The best way to extract honest answers is to not let the students write their names but their responses on their respective papers.
The answers I collect from the first question let me know if I can also deliver something other than the structured lesson plans like attributes which are worthy of emulation (e.g., patience, punctuality, understanding, etc.) by the students and for me to enhance the same.
On the other hand, the responses I gather from the second question help me improve upon my shortcomings. I am well aware that I am not perfect so I make it a point to always attach this question to the first comprising that special activity in the content of all my syllabi.
I admire the honesty of the students that is reflected on each of their answers especially in the second question. At this point, let me give only my favorite among the plethora of responses I collected from the first question. After that, five responses from the second question will do for this purpose, I think, since that’s more important to me than the former.
(For Question No. 1)
“Mr. Fugaban, I would like to tell what kind of teacher you are. You are very serious (which I really don’t like) yet a very inspiring teacher. At first, you are not the type of instructor that I really love to have but when I got to know you deeper, I saw good things in you. That’s why I only liked you in the middle of the semester. You don’t know how to crack jokes to make the class lively and that’s really something you lack. The thing is, our class is energized by jokes from time to time during the discussion. I know that because we’ve been together since day one.
However, despite the fact that you lack humor, you are undoubtedly very understanding and very professional. You always understand us especially when we are noisy at times. You are the ONLY instructor who can handle and control our section. You also don’t show anger, sadness, whatsoever. That’s the most important lesson I learned from you since I am very hot-tempered. I easily get annoyed by noisiness or disappointments in life. And since I want to become a teacher in Hotel and Restaurant Management (HRM) field someday, I realized that I should also possess those traits to be a competitive teacher like you. I should know how to manage my emotions so that it will not affect my performance.”
(For Question No. 2)
“Let’s get straight to the point and I have already said this: What I hate about you is you lack humor and most of the time, you only tend to focus on what should be done for each meeting.”
“Even though you are approachable, your smile is expensive.”
“You don’t provide visual aid.”
“You talk fast.”
“Your make-up classes since I am a working student and I have duties to attend to on the days you conducted the make-up classes.”
I have, of course, my reasons but what matters is that those answers are just true in general and all I wanna do now is to improve for my students. So to the majority of the class who gave the same meat of “hate response” contained in Number 2, I promise I will work out for that.
Happy Teacher’s Day to all the teachers in the world and to the teachers’ best teachers: THE STUDENTS!
A very wise old teacher once said: “I consider a day’s teaching wasted if we do not all have one hearty laugh” (Gilbert Highet).
Dear God, please pour upon me a bucket of humor. I know I can do something with the rest of what the students don’t like about me, but humor is just something that’s not in my DNA. So please, pour upon me a bucket of humor.
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