Thursday, 5 September 2013

Teachers Open Doors

When you were kid who opened the world of art and music to you? Who familiarised you with numbers and poems? Who taught you to question and reason out? Well, those were our teachers and from the beginning of time when they were ‘Guru’(s) to the present modern time ‘Miss’  , ‘Ma’am’ and ‘Sir’ the world hasn’t been able to do away with them, as it’s only impossible!! 
In the words of William Butler Yeats, 
"Education is not the filling of a pail but the lighting of a fire."

A good teacher educates us through experiences and stories and fables, torches path and enlightens. Such teachers are angles in disguise of parents, friends, brothers, sisters and of course our very own ‘Life’.

In India we celebrate Sept. 5 as teacher’s day which is the birth anniversary of Dr. Radhakrishnan a great teacher. UNESCO instituted World Teacher's Day on October 5. In America, students celebrate Teacher Appreciation week in the first full week of May. What is clearly imminent, is the fact that we acknowledge their patience and compassion all around the globe, and are grateful for their teachings which act as beacon of light, guiding us through the journey of life.

School teachers influence our life the most in our growing days, moulding our thoughts, making right curves. Filling the blank pages of our mind with best they know. They try to bring out the best in each child, teaching morals, exposing us to different spheres of science, society, art and sports, giving rise to future engineers, doctors, pilots, chefs, painters, singers, officers….Definition of a good teacher - They never overload us with knowledge, they know how much would penetrate into our systems picking up right words and making teaching effective, interesting and school going fun! I for sure had a bunch of very nice teachers, May be that's why I loved going to school so much that on Sundays when Mom would say its holiday, I would suspect her, would cry thinking she is only conspiring, for not letting me go to school.The silly imagination!!! I wouldn't be wrong if I say most of our best memories are of childhood and somewhere or the other few are attached to our teachers who played a great part in shaping us. I remember it was my teacher who helped with my first dancing steps. For annual function in each school there is always at least one show where nursery kids perform. Because who doesn't love little kiddos shaking their legs off tune!! I recall how hard we used to practice, I was a flower and all I had to do was wave, wave with rhythm... All I would do was sit smile and wave or stand, bend with music smile and wave.. Since then I never left an opportunity for performing on stage be it dancing or acting. Experiences and memories just got better.

Few teachers' specific words or actions linger in our memory lane even decades after our school days. Their insights broaden our horizons and enable us to expand our knowledge. Subconsciously, we emulate them as we pass on our knowledge to the next generation. Thus, in a way a great teacher's influence can last for many generations. 

Like each one of you I owe a lot to my school teachers. I was lucky to have some of the best teachers. I would disagree to my parents but would never to my teachers. I always admired the way they dressed, smiled and taught us the difficult topics with ease. When I was in third standard I had once failed to do H.W., as a result I had to face the ‘agony’ of our teacher Neela Shukla Ma’am… she punished me and my fellow classmates on our same mistakes, it was embarrassing and I started to be dislike her or say hated her and to save myself from facing the tragedy again I made sure I never missed my H.W. We passed to fourth grade. One fine day during lunch time I was hopping in the corridor to reach my class and banged Neela Shukla Ma’am I wished her with an apologetic smile, she caught my hand and took me inside her class. I got worried! We were not allowed to run in corridors. She introduced me to the class and all were smiling. I was more scared! They all clapped. I felt like a joke! But to my surprise, it was not the first time kids had heard my name. I had earned a good name and was being praised for being a good student. She had even named one girl by my name or may be its just the fragment of my imagination or may be she did in real!!?? I jumped out of the class and shared my joy with my friends. I was too happy. Her punishments worked in right way. She liked this student I had become. Since then I didn’t hate any teacher, except one!

Most of us end up with no more than five or six people who remember us. Teachers have thousands of people who remember them for the rest of their lives, they make few of the students so capable that they are remembered by many even after death. Some known personalities we know were once teachers. To name a few - Mother Teresa, Dr. Manmohan Singh, Rabindranath Tagore, Alexander Gram bell, Robert Frost, Barack Obama, Oprah Winfrey, J.K. Rowling, Kiran Bedi, Hug Jackman, Sylvester Stallion, Albert Einstein, R.K. Narayan ( I know few names are surprising!!). There is a saying which says only highly blessed people become teachers.

I sometimes wonder about the teachers of people such as Abraham Lincoln, Arya Bhatt, Ashoka the great, Mahatma Gandhi and the like. Are these great personalities outcome of their own intellect and talent? Or they were inspired by their teachers to achieve success and glory? Does teachers have the rare quality of turning dust into gold? As an answer to these questions I quote what Italian astronomer and mathematician Galileo expressed, "You cannot teach a man anything; you can only help him discover it in himself." Well on that note, Life is a greate teacher.

Good teachers help in enabling self discovery, help us in reaching to our best of best. They open new avenues, and encourage students to explore and achieve their true potential.

“I am indebted to my father for living. But to my teacher for living well,” said the famous conqueror Alexander the Great. 

We must credit our teachers who ignite the fire of learning in the mind that is yearning for knowledge. Thank your teachers not only today, express your affection by making each day of your teacher's life special with thoughtful words and deeds. God bless our teachersJ.

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