September 18, 2009

Teachers RULE!!!

Let me start by saying that yes, I know.... I should have been a teacher. I was never motivated by parents or school counselors or any type of testing when I was in high school toward becoming a teacher. In fact, my counselors told my graduating class to forget teaching as there were too many others going into education. In other words, counselors at that time, thought that their job was to guide students toward whatever jobs were available in abundance, most like due to the population explosion of the Baby Boomers. They also did not think of inspiring students toward higher goals. On behalf of counselors of the day, they were probably not schooled to do otherwise, but that shouldn’t have precluded them from thinking out-of-the-box and inspiring students to seek out their passions and not just their abilities and follow that path toward a career, no matter what the job data told them.

I had one, or perhaps two teachers in my lifetime that looked for that light in a child’s eye, that spark of curiosity and quest for knowledge. We have all known that special teacher who was different from the rest. We have also heard how dire our education system is and compares to other countries in the world. There is much work to be done, but there is no taking from the fact that a teacher, which is defined as “someone who shows or explains to someone how to do something” in it’s most basic meaning of the word, is and should be treated as one of our country’s most precious resources. Teachers are not solely persons who make a product or even provide a service. Teachers are persons who dedicate most of their lives to inspiring and yes, teaching our children how to make our world a better place. Many times, teachers take the place of the job that is lacking from parents and family, as role models and mentors of how to respect one’s fellow man. Teachers have too long been thought of as a necessary source of preparing children for the work force. Educators are the source of what human beings possess over most other creatures of the Earth, and that is thought, ideas, and the why’s and how’s. Education and thinking are the only sources of enlightenment to keep us from our deepest and darkest fears, that if left unchecked, bring out the worst in humankind. We need teachers and we need to give them all the resources, funding and support that we can as they are our best hope for a world where humans can live together and respect and care for one another and for those with the most need.

The uneducated promote fear and anger. The educated embrace the unknown with curiosity and help their fellow beings toward a goal of the best state of civility and freedom.

Our world seems to be heading toward some type of major class separation or clash of the wealthy and powerful with the rest of the us, and all other creatures as well. Greed seems to have a clench on our world and is squeezing tighter than ever as a very small segment of humans want to hold on to as much of everything that they can, while the rest of humankind loses more and more. We must remember that greed is really an aspect of fear and ignorance, for as the few take the most, they find that they are in need of the many to survive. Intelligence through education and teaching will empower the many IF, we follow that path. Ignoring our most precious resource, teachers, will only empower us to serve.

As long as there are children like Dalton Sherman, who are inspired by teachers, hope for the best possible future for all of us will survive and endure. Watch Dalton Sherman, the 5th grader and keynote speaker for the Dallas Independent School Districts 2008 Back to School pep rally as he gave this speech in front of 20,000 students and educators. He is a great example of what teachers can inspire in a child.

Thank a teacher the next time you see one, or perhaps seek out a teacher you once knew and send him or her a note of "thanks" for their efforts and inspiration!


Beverly Mahone said...

I saw that video and the interview with the young man and Jenna Bush on the Today Show. Quite impressive! I have to say I had several teachers to motivate me throught my life. I have two teachers I actually stay in touch with to remind them of how much I truly appreciate their guidance in my young adult life. One of my teachers actually came to my book signing and told me why she was so hard on me :)

David said...

Thanks for reading and the comment Beverly! I had one teacher who did that for me but she was pretty old when I was in grade school, so I'm sure she's not around anymore. My daughter who graduated from HS in 2007 and had a music/band teacher who was amazing and inspired countless students and parents! He made her life different. I love that and teachers need to be paid like doctors! They are that important.