Teaching, in my experience, is an undervalued and often misunderstood profession. I have been a qualified music teacher for eight years now, and after I saw a great list on Facebook this morning about teaching and the stereotypes that are associated with the profession, it prompted me to compile a list of my own.
These are my Top 25 ways to know when you’re a teacher:
1. Regardless of where you are – shopping, the cinema, in a restaurant, even on a beach on holiday – you’ll almost always hear ‘Hi Miss/Sir’ and instantly know that a student is standing behind you. The event of this happening is even more likely when you’re wearing your scruffy clothes and haven’t washed your hair.
2. You are called ‘Mum/Dad’ accidentally at least ten times a day.
3. You’ve learnt not to complain about your job to your non-teacher friends as this will always elicit a ‘but you get three months off a year, you have it so easy’ response from them and you don’t wish to be charged with GBH.
4. Excitement can be found in the discovery of an attractive looking ring-binder.
5. You’ve developed the art of almost inhaling a meal in less than twenty minutes.
6. You’re capable of working an entire day without visiting the toilet.
7. You have come to terms with the fact that any physical flaw that you have will be highlighted to you at some point.
8. Even in your 20’s you’ll be considered old and past it, except by a child’s grandparent who will tell you that you’re too young and inexperienced to have the job.
9. A child’s behaviour and personality is instantly explainable and understandable after meeting the parents.
10. You consider the work suitability of a garment when purchasing an item of clothing.
11. You are capable of correcting the behaviour of somebody else’s child simply by giving them your best ‘teacher face.’
12. You almost consider not having children of your own as you know that the prospect of naming them will be virtually impossible, due to the association that names bring with certain ‘cherubs’ in your classes.
13. You spend Sunday nights on YouTube to find interesting resources for the next week.
14. You own your own laminator, colour printer and shredder.
15. There is no question that can be asked that makes you blush – you’ve heard them all before.
16. You’ve stopped rolling your eyes when your students almost die from shock at the idea that you actually have a first name, or a family, or own an up-to-date piece of technology, or enjoy music created post 1960.
17. There are no names that could sound unusual anymore, and know how to spell the same popular name in twenty different ways.
18. It is possible to develop Jedi mind powers and ‘sense’ the presence of a mobile phone.
19. The biggest laughs can be found on websites containing compilations of stupid answers to questions on exam papers.
20. Your peripheral vision now extends to 360 degrees.
21. You teach lessons in your dreams.
22. You are capable of rephrasing all of your sentences to avoid any words that may be considered rude (unfortunately music terminology is rife with these sorts of words – I haven’t used the word ‘pianist’ in years).
23. A fantastic lesson with a wonderful class, or witnessing a child achieve something beyond what they thought capable, will provide you with a buzz for the rest of the day.
24. You’ve cried in private if you hear that one of your students have experienced something horrible in their personal lives.
And finally (try not to vomit at this one, but it’s absolutely true)
25. A genuine ‘thank you’ from a child reminds you exactly why you do the job.
Are there any others that you could add to the list?
You can also find me on Twitter and Tumblr @suzie81blog
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