I never thought that I would want to be a teacher. Teaching seems to be a path that a lot of my family members took, but I didn't feel like it was the way for me. I thought it would be horrible having to work with people at all times, especially people who are not adults!
Since then, I have learned that a lot of adults are actually worse than kids. Kids can be influenced and reasoned with, whereas adults can be stubborn and hard to work with. Despite what I just said, I do believe high schoolers are pretty much HORRIBLE. So why do I want to be a high school teacher? Well it still confuses me sometimes.
When it comes down to it, the main reason I want to teach is because of the example of all of the many amazing, influential teachers who have really changed my life. I had some incredible elementary school teachers who recognized my strengths and really cared for me. I had one or two jr. high teachers who pushed me to become better and were simply fun. And of course, there are several high school teachers who have helped shape who I am, and who now I truly regard as friends.
Teachers take up a lot of time in the lives of students who have to be at school every day, and I'm grateful for teachers who go the extra mile to build relationships rather than just lecture. I want to be like them in a way that my students can feel like their teacher is a friend rather than just an authoritative figure. I feel like it makes a world of difference to kids when they have teachers who provide extra support and can really see their potential. I want to help students live up to what they can be.
To me, the most important thing you can teach a student is not facts nor skills, but rather to love learning. My mom and I were talking about this the other day, actually, about how creating life-long learners is the ultimate goal. As proud as I am of my piano students when they perform well at a recital, it is more rewarding when they develop a love for playing the piano. Tonight one of my students got overexcited while learning about fermatas, and two of my other students showed me an unassigned duet that they have been working on just for fun. I felt pretty accomplished! My teaching skills will not get them to Julliard, but if they can learn to love learning and playing the piano, I think my job is done.
So that's why I want to be a teacher, and I hope that you can understand. Too often I get told that I shouldn't go into the teaching because of the crappy pay (and because let's face it - I could rock the world of business), but the fulfillment of making a difference in the lives of students is much more important to me. Plus, the breaks are AWESOME.