Prideful teachers who discourage

brilliant professor

The Chinese prof taught so fast that, I’m sure, only he understood himself. I think he was more interested in displaying his own brilliance than helping college student learn. He scolded students for any sincere mistake. It was intimidating and discouraging. Yet the Chinese department was renowned at this community college. No doubt he was proud of that. Anyone genius enough to survive this prof would achieve excellence in Chinese.

Though the department was famed for quality, I don’t think his teaching method was good. It is the job of teachers to inspire and help, not discourage and humiliate.

I have made it my aim to motivate as much as I teach, to be patient with struggling students. I am constantly searching for the joyful “click moment,” when the student “gets it” and smiles with pleasure that a previously incomprehensible subject now becomes “a piece of cake.”

If you’re impressed with your own brilliance, if you’re aim to to exhibit your own genius, teaching is not the profession for you. Because teaching is about them, not you. It’s about students learning, not teachers teaching.


Motivating the unmotivated

books' powerAs a child, I lived in a dreamworld of books. Narnia transported me beyond the wardrope. James took me on his journey with the giant peach. I visited other countries, continents and even planets. Books were a marvel to me.

Now I marvel to see that kids don’t read. Their dreamworld is their smartphone.

Technology has put learning at kids’ fingertips — and they don’t want to learn!

Recently, I am having the kids read Hamlet, and some fall asleep in class!

The negative side in me worries we are heading back to the Dark Ages. The positive side in me is trying to strike the fire in the cold world of anti-learning of today.