She was just fifteen years old. While the ‘trend’ of career choices during that generation was to choose between becoming a doctor or engineer, Savithri wanted to become a teacher. She was so inspired by all the teachers who made her who she was. They did not just teach subject lessons, but a major part of life-lessons and grooming her teenage rightly – was by her favorite teachers. So she wanted to do the same for everyone and connect with children, build a better world through nurturing next generation. So, she strongly told her parents about her choice and selected “teaching” as her passion and profession.
Viraj was from a village, an exceptionally talented kid, who loved mathematics. Being a natural influencer, he was mostly found, after school, with a bunch of classmates and juniors, talked to them about latest sports news, opportunities, stories of resilience, what was happening across the globe on achievements. And he grew up to become a government school maths teacher. You still find him, after school surrounded by his big group of students who adore him, as he educates them on latest innovations across the world. Ofcourse a lot of maths come into picture. He can stay without food, but not without meeting and motivating his students. He felt satisfaction and meaning in this.
Pavithra did her graduation in Computer science engineer as per her parent’s choice, later found that she is not good with computers, and career is something you choose with your heart. After few years, becoming a mother also made her realize her love for children and how much she enjoyed teaching them little things everyday. She decided to quit her “Arranged-I.T job” as she fell in love with becoming a “kindergarden school teacher”. She worked hard, completed the certification courses and case studies for the same. The first day, as a bunch of little toddlers walked into class and she sang for them, looking at the “awe” in those cute pairs of eyes – she felt amazing and proud.
Chandini’s story is very normal , married woman’s story in India. A state-level topper during tenth grade in U.P, later completing her masters in science and a month later, being married to a U.S returned software engineer who is working in Bangalore, also living with her mother in law, her only source of breathe and freedom is her job. She is a teacher for primary school children in one of the reputed schools in Bangalore. While her nerdy brain was just a chapter in life, she could restart her studious liking to education through educating the students. Once she hopped into the school bus, none of her personal problems mattered to her. She carried pride and happiness through her job, living her favorite part of the day in the school.
All of the above characters and many more resonating with their stories – faced a shattering year in lifetime which is 2020. With Covid pandemic and lockdowns and schools being shut down, every teacher’s passion and dream also shivered. And while the management and education sector debated about online classes and revising the syllabus, the teachers who never were a fan of gadgets and computers, picked up to learn the new modes. More than just learning the methods, it was an emotional acceptance. The best part about being a teacher is looking into the eyes of their student, being in class together, completely coming away from home – and the package called “Online classes” comes with staying inside the house, shifting the camera to a better angle, finishing household chores before the classes which begin early around 8 AM. Assignments, online tests, corrections and uploading back – the platforms of their profession completely took a paradigm shift.
While every teacher felt stressful (additional to the normal covid pandemic stress everyone are dealing with) in order to “discover” and “adapt” to new learning / teaching methods. While the press and media conducted debates about what students and parents are undergoing, the teachers and management wore an armour of courage and responsibility. What will happen if your child does not study / undergo education for one academic year? Who takes the responsibility ? The warriors here are “teachers”.
Buying new and better gadgets to support online classes, finding interacting ice breakers to keep children active and energized during the class, being smart teacher while conducting exams, presenting creative assignments, conducting competitions online – the teachers are magicians in the world of academics. They set up a part of their house with boards and charts related to the subjects and set up their devices in angles of easy absorption. They compromise a lot both personally and professionally and does a lot of preparation and home work to ensure they do their job right and their passion to the students drives them to do so.
Hats off to all the teachers ! Who are making 2020 ‘s academics smooth in every possible way!