Tuesday, May 7, 2013

"Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn."

 "Education is not the filling of a pail but the lighting of a fire." --William Butler Yeats

        Monday May 6th to-Friday May 10th is Teacher Appreciate Week. If you hold or treasure memories of a beloved educator in your life send them a card, email or give them a call to tell them how much they have inspired you. One of my favorite teachers also happens to be my sister! Teachers dedicate their time and energy to instruct, motivate and encourage. They spend hours leading in the classroom and assisting students followed by even more hours after school grading, tutoring and attending meetings. Have you considered being a teacher? Have you ever observed a classroom or volunteered? If you are considering a career in education the best way to ensure you are right for the job is to spend time on the front lines. Teaching is one of the most difficult occupations in the world.  Most teachers sacrifice their heart and soul to guide children and adults towards a genuine love of learning. Usually, this sacrifice comes with unlimited bureaucracy and minimal monetary reward. There are those teachers who truly love what they do but are underpaid and unappreciated. If you were fortunate enough to have an outstanding teacher you will  always remember them..
     One of the most inspiring professors I have ever known was discovered while attending college. During the first week of class he shared a beautiful poetic tribute to his rambunctious terrier, Nipper. His slide show of  artistically edgy black and white photographs captured this sweet little dog frolicking on a beach, playing tag with the rolling waves. There was not one student or colleague of  Dr. McMahon's who didn't love him. He inspired his students to observe, think deeply and absorb life. He encouraged me to submit poetry and essays to our college literary magazine and write articles for the newspaper. He gave me confidence in my ability as a writer while I was feeling like a failure for not passing Algebra II. Thank you so much Dr.M. for believing and encouraging my strengths and not focusing on my weaknesses.
     Take a few moments to thank a teacher this week. Better yet, thank them whenever you can. Let them know how their influence may have changed your life forever.