ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Education and Science»
  • Home Schooling & Life Experience Education

Thoughts On Becoming The Teacher I Want To Be

Updated on July 14, 2014

I teach English classes for homeschool students. I meet with each class once a week for a two hour session, where we do class-like things such as take notes on a lecture, discuss the assigned reading, and watch the occasional BBC movie. Then I send them off with enough assignments to last the rest of the week.

What makes a teacher effective?

I feel like I don’t get that much time with my students. This is in the nature of teaching homeschoolers, since they work independently most of the time. So I’ve been reflecting on making the most of the time I have. I’ve been thinking over the interactions with teachers that impacted me most during high school. While education is life-long, the years dedicated to formal schooling are short, and these years are also a time when a little bit of influence can go a long way. My first year teaching, the principal of my school told us during a teacher’s meeting, “You teach a little by what you say, more by what you do, and the most by who you are.” Reflecting back on the teachers who influenced me, that is very true.

I once downloaded a whole new vision for life from a comment a teacher made during an informal conversation. A bunch of us students were hanging out in a classroom after school, and someone said, “Exactly why do we want to go to college anyway?” This was a college prep school, so everything was geared to college placement, but sometimes a sixteen year old just wants to question the system. One student tossed out the likelihood of making more money, and another that your parents would never let you hear the end of it if you didn’t. The teacher was sitting back with his feet up, letting the kids do the talking, but at this point he interjected that he went to college to learn how to think, to become a different kind of person, an intellectual.

Peanut M&Ms make class go better. Must be the protein.
Peanut M&Ms make class go better. Must be the protein.
Teaching Literature: The Independent Educator's Guide: for homeschoolers, unschoolers and others who teach outside the conventional classroom
Teaching Literature: The Independent Educator's Guide: for homeschoolers, unschoolers and others who teach outside the conventional classroom

An overview to teaching language arts and literature in homeschool: the hows and whys, backed up with research and experience.

 

He defined the goal for me

When I heard this, it was like a light turning on. I didn’t grow up around educated people: my grandparents were immigrants, and my parent’s generation finished high school if they were lucky. I was the first generation to set my sights on higher education, and as much as my family touted a college degree, the most common reason I heard growing up was that my grandfather would have wanted it. I knew I wanted college, I wanted it very much, but until that moment I couldn’t really articulate why. But this teacher put what I felt into words. I realized that I wanted to go to college to become a different person, capable of different things. I had sensed education would change me in some fundamental way, and that it would fact suit my temperament and character perfectly. Now I knew why.

So I remind myself what my first principal said, “You teach a little by what you say, more by what you do, and the most by who you are.” Focusing on what I’m going to say during class is probably the most straightforward way to approach teaching. I know I have to figure out the material I need to get through, and the points I need to cover. But I also know that communicating my love for novels, for characters, for great description, is the most important thing I have to give. The best thing I can do as a teacher is be me.

Part of being me: Every so often while I am teaching my housemates drop in to listen. I find visitors liven up class, especially if they fly in and land on the teacher's head.
Part of being me: Every so often while I am teaching my housemates drop in to listen. I find visitors liven up class, especially if they fly in and land on the teacher's head.

Quick poll!

What made your favorite teacher effective?

See results

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: "https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr"

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)