What do children teach us..

Before I become a teacher, I never realised that students would teach me lessons. I just presumed I would teach them and that was the end of it. Since starting my first teaching job this year, I have realised how much students teach us. Learning goes both ways! I am learning so much about life from them. I feel really privileged to be able to work with young people every day.

  1. Honesty – Young people are brutally honest. Whether it is positive or negative they will tell you how it is. The students have taught me how important honesty is!
  2. Be yourself– Be proud of who you are and do not change for anyone. I see this with 1st years but sadly sometimes it is not as prominent with older years as they tone themselves down to feel ‘accepted’ or ‘fit in’.
  3. Humour– Young people are hilarious. My classes make me laugh everyday. It is important to not take yourself seriously and to have a laugh with your students. Learning should be fun not dreary.
  4. To not judge people based on their origin or the colour of the skin – A few weeks ago I was reading ‘The Field’ by John B. Keane with my 3rd years and my students would not read the word ‘tinker’ or ‘traveller’ aloud as they did not want to offend one of their peers in their class. Also students do not care what colour your skin is, they just care if you are a good person or not. 
  5. To be happy for no reason
  6. Being a role model– If you are a good person and you try your best. The students will think you are amazing. They look up to you. You are a role model to them.
  7. Care– Students will know whether you really care about them or not. They are not stupid.
  8. Acceptance- The students will accept you and each other for who they are. They realise no-one is perfect. Incredibly mature!
  9. Fearless– Young people are so fearless. They leap without looking and they are not afraid to take chances.
  10. Curiosity– Young people love to ask questions. I get asked a million questions a day. I thought it would be just 1st years asking me questions but 6th years ask a lot of questions too. Some you will not be able to answer. For example while reading ‘The Plough and the Stars’ with my 6th years, one student asked me ‘Did Nora have many boyfriends before Jack?’. Sean O Casey did not say, he only mentions Jack and that Brennan used to have a thing for her. For the questions you should know the answer too but you do not then just be honest. Tell the students you will find out tonight and tell them tomorrow or else ask them to find out for homework. The students have taught me to never stop asking questions in life. 
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