Putting it all to thought, the turn of a new year may mean one thing to a teacher; starting the same thing all over again.

Five years into it, I dare say this is not quite true. Look at it this way; does a mother of three have the exact same experience thrice? I don’t think so. The same goes for a teacher. Each class has its unique experience and share of joy and challenge.

One class may have a majority of mature students – motivated to do the right thing at the right time and make teaching a joy. Another class may seem to have all the ‘wrong’ crop of students; a group whose existence is buried in what the next great hip hop beat would sound, or what the hot ‘chick’ teacher might be doing at that moment. Going into such a classroom just may be a pain in the neck.

The art of teaching the same thing in a thousand different ways is the beauty God put into this experience, realising that even as a teacher you don’t quite know it all. You have to be creative about singing the same song with different tunes, all the while being interesting and relevant.

Teaching is not a vocation for churning more human resource into the world of labour. It is a journey one walks with individual students. Some are confident enough to go across the bridge but still hold your hand, others are scared that they will not make it across, yet they do.

It is true that some make a neat mess of everything, and don’t make the cut, but it is they that build our patience and help grow our character. As we pray for them, we learn to lean on hope that they will make something out of life in their own way.

The flipping into a new year is then an anticipation of a new experience, not just with the admission of a new lot, but even with each of the older ones as they face a new class year. The returning of alumni with their flashy cell phones and the outlandish sense of fashion, adds icing to the cake. It is a worthwhile journey.


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