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15 Things I Wish I'd Known Before Becoming a Teacher

15 Things I Wish I'd Known Before Becoming a Teacher

Jill Hare | Editor,

13. Only someone who’s been alone in a classroom full of students can appreciate exactly what your job is like.

I have a great group of friends that are teachers. (See #11) The rest don’t really understand what it’s like to not sit at a desk with a phone and a computer. Most people relate to teachers from their experiences as students. And just as we don’t “get” how hard jobs outside education might be, they might not fully understand our teaching jobs. Pick your teacher friends to work out issues at school; they’ll be the best at listening and relating.

14. A note of thanks from a parent or student will mean more than any gift.

In the bottom of my night stand I have a card tucked in an old book. It’s my absolute favorite note from a mom of three boys I used to teach. In it, she explains how she could tell I really cared for her boys and how much they enjoyed learning in my class. It’s nothing fancy but it’s hand written and honest. The best part? She wrote it two years after they’d been in my class. As a teacher, you’ll get enough apples and coffee cups to fill a cabinet, but hand written notes are priceless- the best kind of evaluation of your work.

15. Students are amazing creatures.

Each student has a unique personality and talent. Teachers have such an interesting perspective to interact with students and watch them interact with each other as they mature. From the beginning of the year to the last day of school, it’s fascinating to watch how students grow. Each year and each new group of students is a journey different from the previous year.

Discuss this topic now. If you knew then what you know now, would you still become a teacher?

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