Why I chose to be a teacher13 December 2015
Madhu Wal in classroom
Madhu Wal :
I chose to be a teacher because teaching is not just a profession but a vocation; it is a mission. Children, who are like clay are moulded and shaped by the hands of a teacher. Pandit J.L Nehru said, most appropriately that "the destiny of a nation is shaped in her classrooms." No career, no work can be more rewarding than that of a teacher who is occupied in building the personality of a student in order to equip him to face the challenges of a competitive world in the throes of transition and change.
The love and affection, the respect that students shower on a teacher who is able to inspire them by example in all spheres far surpasses the joy that riches and wealth can bestow. Teaching is the most fulfilling work because the pleasure of watching your students grow and develop from a young age to maturity is unparalleled. What great satisfaction it gives to see your students acquire new dimensions to their personality, gaining confidence and poise and all a result of your inspiration, of your instruction. As has been rightly said, "an average teacher tells, a good teacher explains, an excellent teacher demonstrates and an outstanding teacher inspires." "The inspiration that a teacher's soul breathes into his student's soul is like a miracle."
I chose teaching because being with children is like being endowed with perpetual youth. The love, laughter, mischief, creativity and imagination of children is like an eternal fountain of joy and vitality. Children at all times exude life and vitality which in turn lights your candles of enthusiasm.
Monotony never sets into this profession as each child is God's special creation to be nurtured with care and special attention. Each child is an individual who needs to be dealt in a way which is never the same. Each day unfolds a new learning experience for the teacher. So there's no juncture in a teacher's life that he can claim he's reached his zenith. Exciting possibilities, unexplored spheres of learning and human personality are unraveled every day. Each day is unpredictable and that adds excitement to this profession.
No dull moment darkens the horizons; every new dawn brings with a new realization. The complexity of the human personality with its myriad aspects is the raw material for a teacher's chisel.
Learning or education cannot be equated with mere literacy or learning the 3 R's. A teacher's job is perhaps the most challenging because it is a Herculean task to ensure that the students imbibe the right values, socially desirable habits and skills. It's easy to instruct, but it's difficult to teach in the true sense of the word, which is why I adopted this profession because the very challenge inherent in the job gives to it an aura of esteem and glory that no other job can replicate. The mantle of responsibility that rests on the shoulders of the teachers gives to one a tremendous sense of accomplishment and achievement. A surgeon gives life to a man, but a teacher gives a soul - a soul capable of compassion, love, care, sympathy, a soul, capable of admiring the tender petals of a flower, a soul capable of wonder at the miracles of Life and Nature, sensitive to the needs of others. The spectrum of the teachers canvas is limitless; he can make or mar the life of a child.
I realized that through teaching I would be able to fulfill my soul's craving to make a contribution in shaping the world of tomorrow, for a teacher's objective is to shape future citizens, well aware of their responsibilities who can be the leaders of tomorrow. When I see my students like Omar Farooque Abdullah whom I taught at Sanawar in positions where they can lead a million souls, it gives me a joy that is beyond words.
I chose the profession because of the passionate conviction that in it lies my special destiny. Today after nearly four decades in this profession, each day I can wake up with a song in my heart, each day I can walk with a lighter step, each day I can be elevated to the higher levels of awareness because each day brings with it a set of new challenges and new situations to be tackled. Each day becomes a harbinger of a new dawn of hopes and expectations, of possibilities unanticipated, of experiences untold, of dimensions manifold.
The job offers maximum scope for creativity to flourish. Innovation and experimentation, exploring unchartered territories by way of teaching methodologies give to one a great sense of power which is almost intoxicating.
What sweeter fruit can there be?
What greater beauty the eye can see?
Herein lies the astounding territory
Of the human brain's unexplored mystery
All laid vast for me to create
Newer vistas and horizons to appreciate
To mould new shapes, new visions, new dreams
To sail on forever on limitless streams.
(Madhu Wal is Vice Principal, DPS STS School, Dhaka)