Yes it’s Teachers Appreciation Week, so we are sending out a big shout out to all the Teachers all over the world from the Addlo Montessori family. Thank you so much for taking care of our children.
In short form here, are my 10 most important reasons why we should appreciate these great women and men who are called teachers.
- Teachers are parents to every child they tutor. Really think about it who else spends so much time with a child than a teacher most days of the week. If you are a stay at home mum who drops the children off at school and then picks them up when they are done, then you are one of the lucky ones. Most parents have someone else take them to school and pick them up. There is someone else at home to cook dinner, worst of all by the time you get home they are fast asleep, or you just have enough time to say, ‘Hello’ and ‘Goodnight’! What a life! This is a story for another day, the key point though is the teacher may well spend more time with your child than you can. They are the most prominent influencers of the next generation. So we say thank you for taking on this great mission.
- Great teachers do not just instruct but they encourage their students to give their best. Some adults are where they are today only because of the encouragement they got from their teacher who inspired them to give their best. My best experience with teachers was with Professor Omfolabo Soyinka-Ajayi, she was my lecturer at university. She was in Nigeria while I was around and guess what, this time she came to visit me! Really I was OK going to see her, but she insisted that she wanted to find her way to the school so she could come and see me and the school! That is why we must always be thankful for the teachers in our children’s lives. She actually hosted my graduation lunch! She is my yardstick in all I do in the school, she encouraged and still encourages me to give my best.
- Teachers guide our children and teach them a lot about the society and environment. Education is more than intellectual and academic skills and knowledge. Our teachers lay the fabric of morals, ethics, emotional intelligence and growth. It is true that some of these aspects are actually part of the duties of parents, but the teachers are known to do more than their fair share most of the time.
- Teachers sometimes are the main source of inspiration for our children. They understand what a lot of us don’t, children need lots or inspiration, motivation, understanding, and teachers provide this. Time and time again, I hear university graduates thank their primary or secondary school teacher in this class or that subject for inspiring them to succeed.
- Teachers encourage our children to be creative in many ways, as the teachers gain confidence and learn skills in Art, IT, and Creative Writing, and believe me lots of trainings are going on, our teachers are really improving themselves, they need to be encouraged.
- Teachers are very hard working. Some people look at teachers through the wrong lenses. Yes they may get home earlier than the 9 to 5 worker, but that is where the advantage ends. Do you know how many hours of writing lesson notes they have to complete, planning lessons, activities, marking assignments, class work, class notes, tests, exams and then the reports. This is apart from other administrative work that needs their attention. Most of these extra jobs have to be done at home, sometimes to the detriment of their family. Thank you teachers, that is why sometimes it is said that: ‘A teachers award is in heaven.’
- Teachers are dedicated professionals, even though they get a lot of bad press. I am so proud of the crop of teachers I have come into contact with. They love the children they are working with and want to give their best. They are looking out for courses to do so that they can go help the children lagging behind in the classroom. Be careful what you say parent, school owner and the public at large, these teachers are trying and are setting a great example for the others, Let’s encourage them.
- Teachers will always teach regardless of the challenges they face. They may be under pressure from school management, they may not get required materials to teach their subject topics they way they want to. There may be one too many difficult situations in the classroom, but they still teach. A bad day for most does not translate to a bad lesson, or a string of bad lessons for the children.
- Another important point to note is that teachers are not in the profession for the money, even in the western world were teachers are paid much more and they are the envy of many of their collegues, compared to other professionals they are sometimes still the underdog. Regardless of this fact you will find teachers sometimes spending their money, in order to provide better outcomes for their pupils. I have known a teacher who brought her generator from home to use in the school, this was to aid students with learning difficulty and vocational training in the school. Even if all the teacher has done is to bring in extra pencils or pens for children who run out of these simple supplies, we still need to stop and say thank you.
- Teachers are nation builders, think about it, in most of the world children do go to school for at least 14 and sometimes 20 years of their lives before they graduate to working in the real world. Teachers are the work force that build the nation. What we get is what the teachers have done, and so even though in Nigeria at least we still have some ways to go, we do know that we have produced some excellent outstanding citizens. Let’s continue to learn, change when we need to so that the politicians of tomorrow will be who we need them to be. Teachers thank you. We owe you a lot, even if you are sometimes not paid what you deserve. Appreciation comes from our hearts and tomorrow, maybe from the pockets as well.