6 Signs That You Are Not Meant to Be a Teacher

With sincerest apologies to the author of “6 Signs That You Are Not Meant to Be a Programmer“, as I smiled my way through the article, I realized that these signs are not unique to them.  They apply equally as well to teachers.

  1. You Lack Experimental Creativity
    • Those boring old lesson plans that are passed along from teacher to teacher or textbook to teacher or those that we had to prepare for marks at the Faculty of Education don’t cut it in the real world.  Every teacher begins with a concept and then think, think again, and then overthink in order to make the lesson interesting, challenging, and relevant for students.  There’s nothing more useless than plain vanilla in the classroom.  Be honest now – do you ever pull out last year’s lessons and use them without revision?  Bonus:  creative lessons make teaching fun
  2. You Are Not Self-Driven
    • Perhaps it’s not something that you think about but consider this:
      • why else would you go to work when sick yourself
      • there’s no concept of “knock off early” in education
      • who hasn’t experienced the euphoria that you feel when that student finally “gets is” and immediately start to work on a plan to maintain momentum
      • who else would work on a lesson plan at night, while sleeping, when you wake up, in the shower, and then on the trip into work?
  3. You Hate Logic Problems
    • Perhaps it’s not the standard mathematics or logic problem but every student in your care is a puzzle in her/himself.  Successful teachers are constantly looking for the key that unlock the genius and potential within every students.  And like a good puzzle, there’s immense satisfaction with every success
  4. You Can’t Sit for Long Periods
    • Ironically, sitting still isn’t something that’s usually possible in school hours (see normal work hours below).  You’re up and about all the time helping here, solving problems there.  It’s the commitment to lesson plans and marking tests, assignments, doing report cards that require one to be stationary for extended periods of time and focused.  Is there a more superlative word than extended?
  5. You Want Normal Work Hours
    • This is immediately obvious if you’ve ever had a teaching gig, you’ve been the brunt of the jabs about 9-3 and 2 months of holidays.  If only that was what the job was.  Consider that the starting point.  To the base hours, you need to tack on hours for classroom preparation, lesson research, marking, coaching, interviews, report cards, professional learning, additional qualifications, evening phone calls and emails … you get the idea
  6. You Expect to Get Rich Quick
    • Truthfully, the salaries that Ontario teachers get are good and the result of hard working efforts by teacher federations and school districts wanting the best.  It’s so sad to hear about the state of affairs from some of our colleagues in other jurisdictions.  Still, those big houses on the hill and imported European sports cars aren’t owned by teachers.  And, lest you think that you’re getting ahead, what teacher can avoid the dollar stores, Scholar’s Choice, Staples, etc. to make a few purchases to enhance what is already in place in the classroom?

That was great inspiration and fun.  What would you add to the list?

Could I suggest that the only thing that’s even worse is a programming teacher?  They get the best of both worlds!

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One thought on “6 Signs That You Are Not Meant to Be a Teacher

  1. I think I would add: You don’t enjoy the “I wonder” rabbit holes Students can take you down. If they are asking why or want to know more about something…that’s the joy in teaching. They wonder, you follow them down the rabbit hole to assist if needed. It’s not important if they even find the answer…it’s important that they ask the questions and take that journey of discovery.

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