I know that in today’s society there will be many challenges one will face when choosing to become a teacher. I believe that learning how to maintain a classroom’s balance might prove to be difficult to a first year teacher. I know it will take a lot of patience and critique from peers to get into a “flow”. Teachers make literally hundreds of decisions every day, and many of them must be made with nearly spilt-second timing. There may be an issue of an electronic failure that prevents a teacher from following a prepared lesson plan. He/she will have to decide on how to teach the curriculum without the use of that aid. There may be an instance where behavior is an issue and the teacher needs to decide if the entire classroom should be effected or just a few students. Another challenge for a first year teacher might be how to identify bullying.
I’m sure that as students gather on the playground or in the lunchroom where there is limited supervision in all areas, there may be some bullying happening that may appear to the teacher as play. It is proven that people who bully take advantage of imbalances in power, such as greater size or strength, higher status, or the support of a peer group. I feel it is vital that a teacher needs to get to know her students early in the year to recognize behaviors that might lead to bullying or those who may become targets. The student’s socioeconomic status will strongly affect learning. Some students may have parents with well paying jobs and are able to travel and perhaps wear more expensive clothing. Other students may barely have enough to eat and live in less than adequate housing. I also feel that due to this status, some students may not have a strong support system at home to assist in their daily learning making it difficult for a student to be successful.
As there will be many challenges, there are many rewards as well. The rewards in teaching can either be intrinsic or extrinsic. Many people decide on the teaching profession due to the intrinsic rewards. I feel for myself, the most rewarding aspect would be seeing a student grow throughout the year. They may begin with little knowledge on a subject and as the year progresses, a teacher may witness the day when “the light bulb goes on.” When I was in school, I found it very difficult to maintain an interest in my History courses. I found the information very boring and felt at the time had no impact on my current life. I can’t remember one single teacher that I had in this subject that was able to teach the curriculum in a way that I could maintain it.
As I got older and became interested in the History channels on television and watching documentaries, I became extremely interested in this area, especially on the Civil War. I feel that if given the opportunity, I would teach in a way that would capture student’s interest. This would be a great reward to know that I was known a teacher that helped a student understand and appreciate our nation’s background. Another reward would be on the extrinsic side. I have a large family, so as the mother of four children, I look forward to summer vacations. Also, when there are snow days, I’m not trying to find daycare. I am able to have the same hours as my children so that we may have plenty of family time together.
This is very important to me personally. Also, other economic factors have influenced my attractiveness to teach. The annual salaries have been virtually guaranteed to increase. The benefits such as medical, dental and retirement are usually provided and the job is secure. In today’s economy, knowing that one has a profession that has this type of security is vital to families. If given the opportunity, I would love to be able to make a difference in the life of a child. I would take the kind of personal interest on an individual basis to ensure the success of all students that give an honest effort. I feel that with proper home support and a teacher that is committed to their position, every student has an opportunity for a successful future.
Teachers make literally hundreds of decisions every day and many of them must be made with split-second timing. ( Kennedy 2006) “Introduction to Teaching” (2011) p.10
People who bully take advantage of imbalances in power, such as greater size or strength, higher status, or the support of a peer group. (2011) “Introduction to Teaching” (p. 86)
Introduction to Teaching (2011 Kauchak and Eggan) “Diversity: The Changing face of American Classrooms” (p. 20)
Introduction to Teaching (2011) “Rewards and Challenges in Teaching” (p. 5)
Introduction to Teaching (2011) “Extrinsic Rewards” (p. 8)