Articles‎ > ‎

What teaching means to me?

posted May 8, 2012, 8:43 PM by Sangay Dorji   [ updated May 8, 2012, 8:50 PM ]
What teaching means to me?

Namgay Dem
Holding the question in my hand I remained staring at it for a very good length of time. When it comes to putting down, simply being a teacher is not the answer. It needs reflection: thinking of the numerous classes taught. Well, explaining what teaching actually means is as complex as teaching itself.

Entering the class, I look down at the thirty two pairs of eyes peering at me. Those anxious eyes obviously aren’t looking at me blankly: I could see in them a curious question; what are you going to teach us today? To their question, I begin my class introducing the topic, deep myself in explaining, punctuating the class with questions and finally to satiate my expectation I throw fingers at some people to get back in hearing what I have poured out. Huh! I have taught, my students have understood. Is that what teaching actually means to me?

When I think about teaching, I find myself standing on a never ending road. Defining teaching is like trying to grasp the wind. For me teaching is not just echoing the contents of the text, it is far more beyond. It is designing relevant methods; the best lubricants to run the machine of the different ability groups. With the various aid and methods if I can enter the body of every pupil and make them feel the nerves of the poem, paint their heart with the colours of phrases and idioms, transfer them into the world of knowledge, I know I am teaching: teaching to wear the spectacle of optimism, to handle the weapon of honesty and walking the carpet of punctuality and sincerity.

I take teaching as the joy of expression. Getting tethered to this task I can swing to any nook and crane of my heart and exhibit the best of what I know and what I am. I agree with what Sylvia Ashton-Warner had said about teaching, “No other job in the world could possibly dispossess one as completely as this job of teaching. You could stand all day in a laundry, for instance, still in possession of your mind. But this teaching utterly obliterates you. It cuts right into your being: essentially, it takes over your spirit. It drags it out from where it would hide.” What I actually do in the class is half done if I fail to make my students press their ear the hives of what I teach, make them drop a mouse into the content and watch him probe his way out. I believe in the Chinese proverb which says, teaching is not just giving a fish to a man and let him eat for a day rather teaching him to fish and let him rest for his life.

Teaching is the noblest profession; I still remember one of my lecturers say when I first joined the profession. And in these four years of my career I have very much seen this statement come alive. I see myself in the shoe of the old man in the book “The Old Man and the Sea” by Earnest Hemmingway. Like the old man against all the odds of the nature tries to bring home the Marlin, so does a teacher endures all the pains of burning challenges and struggles to throw the beam of light on her student’s dark path. The very act is what I consider TEACHING.

Namgay Dem

Yebilaptsa Middle Secondary School, Zhemgang
Comments