I Love Teaching Because....

Posted by Jarrod Jones on 2/6/2020 4:10:00 PM

Why do I love teaching? That’s an easy one. I love teaching because I enjoy passing on knowledge to others. I enjoy seeing the faces of young people when they learn a new concept. I love it when students get a kick out of improving on their previous test score. I love challenging students to do better than their best each day. I love it when I’m standing before twenty or so twelve and thirteen-year-olds, teaching my little heart out while about eight of them are paying more attention to the air than to me. I love it when twelve and thirteen-year-olds think hiding someone else’s notebook or cinch sack makes the funniest episode of Middle School Maniacs ever constructed. I love it when twelve and thirteen-year-olds stick their fingers in their nose and quickly (but not quick enough) stick said finger on their tongue. I adore when students are more squirrely than actual squirrels in my back yard.

Wait; why do I love teaching?

Well, teaching is not all flowers and rose petals. But it is a box of chocolates. That reminds me: Don’t forget to send my oldest daughter her Valentine’s card and gift and don’t wait too late. That mail system going up towards the Chicago area is slow as chocolate turtles.

Teaching is a box of chocolates because you never know what you’re going to get. Every kid is different….almost every day. When you think you got one of them pegged, they go and do something totally different than they had done the day before. And sometimes that’s a good thing. 

I can’t help but think about how one student has struggled to turn in work all year, but recently told me in the hallway that he finished an assignment. His big bright smile made me smile, and I gave him a big thumbs up. It’s that unpredictability that keeps me on my toes as a teacher. Probably one of the most predictable traits of young teens is they are unpredictable.

I’ve been working with teenagers in multiple capacities for over twenty-eight years, in churches, in community centers, in juvenile detentions, and schools. The funny thing is that in each of those capacities, I saw many tendencies from twelve to seventeen-year-olds that were eerily similar even though the sets of kids in these different settings came from vastly different backgrounds. Now, of course, the students at the juvenile detentions were there for a reason, and I did not see the propensity to steal, rob and break the law from the kids in the other settings, but the one thing I can be sure of: they all just wanted to be kids. When it was all said and done, they were kids, and they did what kids do.

So why do I love teaching? Being able to help mold and shape young minds by motivating them to do their best in school and be the best people they can be. So that kids in the community, in churches, in schools don’t end up being kids in juvenile. So that kids can take something from me and multiply it a hundred times over and become overwhelmingly successful. For all the success stories that I’ve been able to witness. That's why I love teaching.

Teaching is not what I do; it’s what I love.