The Switch

Below is a reflection written by Celine Beatrice Paculan of Grade 11 – ABM who took the role of a Chinese teacher for Grade 3 students.

Have you ever imagined what it would feel like to be a teacher?

As someone who loves to hang around with kids, I was excited to do the switch. But no, I have never imagined teaching them and actually be ‘the teacher’. I was nervous to teach them too. My partner and I were tasked to teach a lecture for grade four and teach arts and crafts to grade three. The Switch was really fun for me, but it was a lot harder than I expected.

A few days before the switch, our teacher had given and explained the tasks to do. Thankfully, she had all the slides, power point and activities prepared. We attempted to make a lantern so that we could teach the students during the switch and studied the lecture our teacher had given us. We were prepared, but it was then on the day itself when we realised that we were not fully prepared.

Most of the students were participative but at the same time, as expected, they were very noisy and hyperactive. It was really hard to control them especially that kids can cry easily or for shallow reasons. The lessons are delivered expecting them to pay attention and to behave. In addition, all these have to be done for a limited time which is really hard.

Let’s admit it. We’ve thought about a lot of things like, ‘Does my teacher think I have the battery life of Nokia or maybe Albert Einstein’s IQ Level?’ Or we’d rant about teachers who would always make things more complicated or teachers who would give you loads of homework.

But you see, there’s more to what teachers do than studying lectures and attempting to make Chinese lanterns. A lot of people often say that teaching is a very hard task to do. I have no idea how much teachers are compensated, but either way they always have loads of work to do— prepare slide presentations or lectures, prepare activities, prepare the lecture, discipline the class, practice patience, stand up for hours, create and check test papers, compute grades and most importantly, support their students and create strong bond with them. For these reasons, it is important for us to make them feel appreciate. Sometimes, some of them are doing more than their job, they want.

A friend once used to say: “Maybe the best thing about some teachers, is that they work because they want their students to learn and build a bond with them and not just because of their salary.”

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