Thursday, 21 August 2014

Why I want to become an English teacher Part I

A common question is why I want to teach English. Knowing my background with it and how I did in the HSC, fair enough. Part of the reason is because despite their best efforts, the English curriculum failed me. My teachers failed me. I let myself fail. To fix the result of this equation, you only need to really focus on one of the three factors in order to make it successful.

If I change the curriculum to something that focussed more on how people relate and think of text rather than how to memorise quotes and imitating and analysing the bare logistics of it, it'll change the way people teach and learn. If I changed myself and my devotion to studies and had put in my own effort to teach myself, then I would be able to understand everything more. If I were to change the way I was taught, well...

The curriculum was set by the government and various other agencies and authorities and so it would be a difficult while before I could change that. Students are fucking dealing with the unnecessary pressurised environment around and within them which is hounding and hounding and pounding and thrashing into their minds, into their bodies, into their values, into their fibre of being a shitload of information and experiences, more than half of which is wrong on many different levels.

Enthusiastic teachers who take time to not only understand the content but their students is probably the most impactful and easiest of the three. Teacher's therefore, in my mind, is the middle person who can change all of that the most easily out of the three. See what engages the class. See who isn't paying attention, falling behind, not understanding and see why. The myriad of situations that an individual student can be experiencing is bloody mind blowing because as each day passes by into the future, new problems arise out of the new technology, standards, societies and values, problems that the older and (not-always-often) wiser have never faced.

Be that teacher who believes in the beauty of diversity in teaching and learning. We're not only going to be moulding young minds, We're moulding people. We're moulding the people who will take over once everyone finally sees how incompetent we are to be in charge. We need to help mould them into someone wiser. Someone more compassionate. Someone open minded. Someone kinder. Someone better. Whatever that may need to mean.

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