RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE TEACHER AND THE TAUGHT
It has often been observed that students tend to score high in their favorite teacher’s subject. Although there is a funny proverbial note, “The best teacher is that, who doesn’t teach”, I am not, at all, indicating to be that one. The ultimate recognition, by the students, is achieved through dedication, reaching the child’s mind, sincere care and selfless teaching. Teacher’s main motive should be to understand the peculiarity of students and act accordingly.
My friends often tell me that I, being a teacher, might be enjoying my work more than others as they are always slogging their heads in the heaps of files kept on their tables and keep on arranging them back from one cabinet to another. I simply say to them that no doubt I do enjoy but imagine what would happen to you all when you don’t find your files at the place you had kept or find all the texts of your file changing on its own from time to time. Here lies the difference that you all deal with files and I deal with LIVING FILES. The students are my files who are never found where left them last time. Their responses are unexpected. They may smile at scolding and frown at your polite suggestions. Above all I, being a teacher, cannot afford to carry my irritation for long, because of one student, as the other students are waiting to be taught. I have observed that after revealing this fact my friends look at their files with great affection and relief.
Students spend 5-6 hours with their teachers and we ought to make it qualitative and fruitful. This task will be just next to impossible if the relationship between the teachers and the taught is not congenial. Working as a boarding teacher makes the task even more challenging when the duration spent with the students goes to 15-16 hours and our responsibilities get multi-fold. Here I would like to add that the day schools, where the teacher is interacting with the students only in class rooms, under ideal conditions, have less idea of what all challenges boarding teachers face in grooming the students on different occasions. A boarding teacher’s job starts from lining up the students for PT/Yoga early in the morning at 6 am, inspecting their turnout, at 7.20 am, before breakfast, monitoring their meal intakes and table manners during all the meals, supervising their study hours and ensuring their timely sleep. Now maintaining a congenial and friendly relationship with the students become a pre-requisite to make them participate and learn all these throughout the day. Here keen observation plays a key role in understanding child’s psychology, his confusions, fears and attitude so that his problems can be combated properly. We, teachers, need to build strong bond and faith with the students so that they may approach us for the solution of any kind of complications or problems.
It has been often seen that yelling at the students is the most convenient way that teachers find to drag students’ attention towards studies but the fact is that even the students need to be handled and molded towards studies with lot of care and that should be acted upon only after understanding their psyche. Students come from different cultures and family backgrounds and they deserve to be respected as an individual. Their needs have to be understood and such a relation should be developed with them that they may confide in you all their problems and confusions, not only academic but related to the life skills as well, so that they may get a mature and sensible guidance. A congenial relationship between teacher and students has a positive impact on not only students’ academic results but throughout their life as well. It enhances their personality and prepares them not only to achieve the goals but help them in reaching the acme of success and maintain that position for a longer period of time. I have many students who address me as “Papa “and “Big Bro”. The girl students often get scolding from me for not keeping and tying their hair properly and it was so amusing to see my class 12th girl students tying their hair in two plaits on the examination days of geography to make me feel good.
They consider me as their guide and mentor which gives me a strange feeling of responsibility towards them. It has been experienced by me that the students whom you have pampered for one or the other reasons during his or her school tenure may not remember you much but the students who have got maximum scolding would always remember you on various occasions and keep you updated about their whereabouts through social networking or phone calls. It is rightly said that people never forget how you have made them feel so the scolding should never cross the limits to make the students feel dejected and remorseful. Even a slap can be respected if it is done for a right cause and in a right way.
Almost everyone has a favorite teacher and one who is liked less but the thread of respect remains common in both the cases. To build a positive relation between a teacher and students is not an easy task and is a little complex too, which can be forged by developing a pleasant learning environment where the students learn lessons from the teacher and the teacher also learns and enhances his teaching ability. The present exposure to media has equipped our students with intelligent queries which should neither be shrugged off nor taken as a blow. Rather, that particular student should be appreciated for asking such question which had made you to re brush and explore your knowledge. Its, actually the qualities of students which keep us updated so we should never discourage their queries.
We, being teachers, should create an open environment where each student is respected and not ridiculed, either by the teacher or by the peer group. Students should always feel free to ask any question and they should be assured that they will neither be taunted nor ridiculed on their queries. We all know that taunting and being ridiculed hurt more than scoldings.
Finally, teachers may not get a strong bank balance at the end of their careers but they do treasure their students who remember you and acknowledge your sacrifice and dedication.
Mr Madhukar Priya
The Mann School