What is Teacherhood?

Teacherhood is a word you have probably never heard of before, so here is my expansive definition. Teacherhood is when a person is put into a position where they can help other people to learn. Nearly all of us are called to be teachers at some stage in our lives: showing children how to cross the road, helping someone learn to read, instructing a co-worker or demonstrating to our friends how to play a new game. Teachers are a kind of helper, but they are a special kind of helper. What separates a teacher from other helpers or carers, is that a teacher wants to be obsolete. That is to say, a teacher wants the person they are helping to no longer need them once they have finished teaching them. It is the old proverb of teaching a man to fish instead of giving him a fish. Thus the calling to teacherhood is one that comes from within, it is about being there for someone for only as long as you are needed and then leaving them to fend for themselves. It is about showing people how to learn, not simply telling them what to put on a test.

Because of the nature of teacherhood, teachers need to always be willing to learn and discover new things. To be a kind of pioneer, always making new discoveries so that one can always teach ones pupils new things as they master the old. Thus the view pushed in modern university education that teaching is a package of coursework that once completed makes one a teacher is misguided. Teaching is about mastering the attitude of teacherhood not regurgitating coursework notes. Teacherhood requires one to be humble as well, as a teacher needs to be able to relate to their pupils feelings and needs, as well as willing to be taught a lesson or two from them! Teachers also need to be systematic in their thinking so they can understand every component of what they are teaching, this is a difficult skill to master, but a good teacher knows every single step required to reach mastery of a topic that they teach.

Teacherhood embodies the following values:

Lifelong learning
Curiousity
Humility
Rational thinking
Systematic thinking
Empathy
Knowledge

As with all things, there are bad teachers and good teachers, if you have a good teacher, he is a treasure to be admire and respected. Posts categorised as “teacherhood” on this website are intended to help people who want to become better teachers.

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