The Top Five Reasons You Should Become a Teacher
eaching is one of the most rewarding careers that one can embark on. It is also one of the most stressful. It takes a special
person to handle everything that is thrown at teachers. Before making a life changing decision, you need to be sure that
you want to become a teacher. If the following five reasons ring true, then you are likely headed in the right direction.
You have a passion for young people.
If you are thinking about going into teaching for any other reason than this, you need to find another career. Teaching is
difficult. Students can be difficult. Parents can be difficult. If you do not have an absolute passion for the young people
that you teach, you will burn out quickly. Having a passion for the young people that you teach is what keeps a terrific
teacher going. It is what drives them to spend long hours trying to figure out how to help those students who are
struggling “get it”. That passion is the driving force behind doing your job year after year. If you do not have a total
passion for your students, you might last a year or two, but you will not make it to year twenty-five. It is a must have
quality for every good teacher.
You want to make a difference.
Teaching can be immensely rewarding, but you shouldn’t expect that reward to come easily. To make a real difference in
a student’s life you have to be adept at reading people and figuring out their own unique preferences. Children of all ages
can spot a phony quicker than any adult. If you are not there for the right reasons, they will certainly figure it out quickly.
Teachers who are real with their students are the ones who make the most difference in their students’ lives because the
students buy into what they are doing. Making the students believe that you are there to make a difference is something
you have to show them over time.
You are skilled at instructing people in a variety of ways.
Students come from such diverse backgrounds that it is difficult to approach any two students in the same way. You have
to be willing and able to teach the same concept through many different approaches or you may not reach all your students.
You will unquestionably not be an effective teacher if you only teach one way. A fantastic teacher is an evolving teacher.
Teachers who search out better and new methods are the ones who will make it. Being flexible and adaptable are two key
characteristics of a good teacher. It allows you to provide instruction in a variety of method that will meet all your
You are a team player.
If you are someone who does not work well with others, teaching is not the career for you. Teaching is all about
relationships and not just the relationships with your students. You can be the greatest instructor in the world and you
limit yourself if you cannot effectively communicate with the parents of your students as well as your peers . Your peers
can offer you so much information and advice that it is an absolute necessity be a team player who is willing to not only
listen to advice, but then to try to apply it to your teaching. If you cannot communicate well with parents , then you will
not last long. Parents expect to know what is going on in their child’s life. You provide a large chunk of that information
for parents of school age children. A good teacher needs to be able to work with everyone involved in the school
You can handle stress factors.
All teachers cope with stress. It is essential that you be able to handle everything thrown at you. There will be days when
you are dealing with personal issues, and you have to overcome those once you walk through your classroom doors. You
cannot let a difficult student get to you. You cannot allow a parent to dictate how you handle your class or a particular
student. There are so many opportunities for stress within a classroom that a excellent teacher has to be able to handle it,
or they will be burned out tremendously quick. If you cannot manage stress extremely well, then education may not be the
right career for you.
Top Seven Reasons To Become A Teacher
Teaching is more than just a job. It's a calling. It's an ever-surprising mix of grueling hard work and ecstatic successes,
both big and small. The most effective teachers are in it for more than just a paycheck. They keep their energy levels up
by focusing on why they got into teaching in the first place. Here are the top seven reasons you should join the ranks
and find a classroom of your own.
1. The Energizing Environment
It's virtually impossible to be bored or stagnant with a job as challenging as teaching. Your brain is constantly engaged in
creative ways as you work to solve a multitude of daily problems that you've never faced before. Teachers are lifelong
learners who relish the chance to grow and evolve. Moreover, the innocent enthusiasm of your students will keep you
young as they remind you to smile through even the most frustrating moments.
2. The Schedule
Anybody who enters teaching solely for a breezy schedule or carefree lifestyle will be immediately disappointed. Still,
there are some benefits to working at a school. For one thing, if your children attend school in the same district, you will
all have the same days off. Also, your will have approximately two months off per year for summer vacation. Or if you
work in a year-round district, the vacation will spread throughout the year. Either way, it's more than the two weeks
paid vacation given in most corporate jobsp.
3. Your Personality And Humor
The greatest asset you bring to the classroom each day is your own unique personality. Sometimes in cubicle life, there's
a need to blend in and tone down your personality. However teachers absolutely must use their individual gifts to
inspire, lead, and motivate their students. And when the job gets tough, sometimes it's only your sense of humor that
can keep you moving forward with any sanity.
4. Job Security
The world will always need teachers. If you are willing to work hard in any type of environment, you'll find that you can
always get work - even as a brand new teacher. Learn your trade, earn your credential, become tenured, and you can
breathe a sigh of relief knowing that you have a job you can count on for decades to come.
5. Intangible Rewards
Most teachers find themselves encouraged and uplifted by the little joys that accompany working with children. You'll
cherish the funny things they say, the silly things they do, the questions they ask, and the stories they write. I have a box
of keepsakes that students have given me through the years - birthday cards, drawings, and small tokens of their
affection. The hugs, smiles, and laughter will keep you going and remind you of why you became a teacher in the first
6. Inspiring Students
Each day when you go in front of your students, you never know what you will say or do that will leave a lasting
impression on your students. We can all remember something positive (or negative) that one of our elementary school
teachers said to us or the class - something that stuck in our minds and informed our viewpoints for all these years.
When your bring the full force of your personality and expertise to the classroom, you can't help but inspire your
students and mold their young, impressionable minds. This is a sacred trust we are given as teachers, and definitely one
of the benefits of the job.
7. Giving Back To The Community
The majority of teachers enter the education profession because they want to make a difference in the world and their
communities. This is a noble and valiant purpose that you should always keep in the forefront of your mind. No matter
the challenges you face in the classroom, your work truly does have positive ramifications for your students, their
families, and the future. Give your best to each student and watch them grow. This is greatest gift of all.
Traits of Successful Teachers
What We Can Learn From Successful Teachers:
The teachers I admire most are those who remain intellectually curious and professionally vital both inside and outside
the classroom for decades. They avoid stagnation at all costs and maintain an enviable passion for children and the
learning process. They remain vivid in the students' memories forever because of their creativity, sense of fun, and
Here are the qualities I feel contribute most to a successful, durable, and happy teaching career:
1. Successful teachers hold high expectations:
The most effective teachers expect great accomplishments from their students, and they don't accept anything less. In
education, expectations form a self-fulfilling prophecy. When teachers believe each and every student can soar beyond
any imagined limits, the children will sense that confidence and work with the teacher to make it happen.
2. They think creatively:
The best teachers think outside the box, outside the classroom, and outside the norm. They leap outside of the
classroom walls and take their students with them! As much as possible, top teachers try to make classroom experiences
exciting and memorable for the students. They seek ways to give their students a real world application for knowledge,
taking learning to the next action-packed level. Think tactile, unexpected, movement-oriented, and a little bit crazy...
then you'll be on the right track.
3. Top teachers are versatile and sensitive:
The best teachers live outside of their own needs and remain sensitive to the needs of others, including students,
parents, colleagues, and the community. It's challenging because each individual needs something different, but the
most successful teachers are a special breed who play a multitude of different roles in a given day with fluidity and grace,
while remaining true to themselves.
4. They are curious, confident, and evolving:
We're all familiar with the stagnant, cynical, low-energy teachers who seem to be biding their time until retirement and
watching the clock even more intently than their students. That's what NOT to do.
In contrast, the teachers I most admire renew their energy by learning new ideas from younger teachers, and they aren't
threatened by new ways of doing things on campus. They have strong core principles, but somehow still evolve with
changing times. They embrace new technologies and confidently move forward into the future.
5. They are imperfectly human:
The most effective educators bring their entire selves to the job. They celebrate student successes, show compassion for
struggling parents, tell stories from their own lives, laugh at their mistakes, share their unique quirks, and aren't afraid to
be imperfectly human in front of their students.
They understand that teachers don't just deliver curriculum, but rather the best teachers are inspiring leaders that show
students how should behave in all areas of life and in all types of situations. Top teachers admit it when they don't know
the answer. They apologize when necessary and treat students with respect.
6. Successful teachers emphasize the fun in learning and in life:
The teachers I admire most create lighthearted fun out of serious learning. They aren't afraid to be silly because they can
snap the students back into attention at will - with just a stern look or a change in tone of voice.
I often think of Disney Teacher of the Year Ron Clark who made one of his Essential 55 rules be "Do not bring Doritos
into the school building" simply because he hated Doritos himself! This irreverent rule (sneaked in amongst the more
important class rules) shows a silly, human side of the teacher while modeling for the students that we can have fun while
we get work done.
For those of us aiming to increase these qualities in our professional lives, it can be intimidating to think that we have to
do everything all at once. Instead, I recommend choosing one of these qualities to focus on each school year and expand
your repertoire slowly but surely. Even the most successful teachers have to start somewhere!
Top 10 Common Teaching Mistakes For Teachers To Avoid
People enter the teaching profession because they want to make a positive difference in society. Even teachers with the purest intentions can
inadvertently complicate their mission if they're not careful.
However, new teachers (and even veterans sometimes!) will have to work hard to conscientiously avoid common pitfalls that can make the job even
harder than it inherently is.
Do yourself a favor and avoid these common teaching traps. You'll thank me for it later!
1. Aiming To Be Buddies With Their Students
Inexperienced teachers often fall into the trap of wanting their students to like them above all else. However, if you do this, you are damaging your
ability to control the classroom, which in turn compromises the children's education.
This is the last thing you want to do, right?
Instead, focus on earning your students' respect, admiration, and appreciation. Once you realize that your students will like you more when you are
tough and fair with them, you'll be on the right track.
2. Being Too Easy On Discipline
This mistake is a corollary to the last one. For various reasons, teachers often start out the year with a lax discipline plan or, even worse, no plan at
Have you ever heard the saying, "Don't let them see you smile until Christmas"? That may be extreme, but the sentiment is correct: start out tough
because you can always relax your rules as time progresses if it is appropriate. But it is next to impossible to become more tough once you've shown
your pliant side.
3. Not Setting Up Proper Organization From The Start
Until you've completed a full year of teaching, you are unable to comprehend how much paper accumulates in an elementary school classroom.
Even after the first week of school, you'll look around at the piles with astonishment! And all these papers must be dealt with... by YOU!
You can avoid some of these paper-induced headaches by setting up a sensible organization system from day one and, most importantly, using it
every day! Labeled files, folders, and cubbies are your friend. Be disciplined and toss or sort all papers immediately.
Remember, a tidy desk contributes to a focused mind.
4. Minimizing Parental Communication and Involvement
At first, it can feel intimidating to deal with your students' parents. You might be tempted to "fly under the radar" with them, in order to avoid
confrontations and questions.
However with this approach, you are squandering a precious resource. The parents associated with your classroom can help make your job easier, by
volunteering in your class or supporting behavior programs at home.
Communicate clearly with these parents from the start and you'll have a band of allies to make your entire school year flow more smoothly.
5. Getting Involved In Campus Politics
This pitfall is an equal opportunity offender for both new and veteran teachers. Like all workplaces, the elementary school campus can be rife with
squabbles, grudges, backstabbing, and vendettas.
It's a slippery slope if you agree to listen to gossip because, before you know it, you'll be taking sides and immersing yourself in between warring
factions. The political fallout can be brutal.
Better to just keep your interactions friendly and neutral, while focusing intently on the work with your students. Avoid politics at all costs and your
teaching career will thrive!
6. Remaining Isolated From The School Community
As an addendum to the previous warning, you'll want to avoid campus politics, but not at the expense of being insulated and alone in the world of
Attend social events, eat lunch in the staff room, say hello in the halls, help colleagues when you can, and reach out to the teachers around you.
You never know when you will need the support of your teaching team, and if you've been a hermit for months, it's going to be more challenging for
you to get what you need at that point.
7. Working Too Hard And Burning Out
It's understandable why teaching has the highest turnover rate of any profession. Most people can't hack it for long.
And if you keep burning the candles at both ends, the next teacher to quit might be you! Work smart, be effective, take care of your responsibilities,
but go home at a decent hour. Enjoy time with your family and set aside time to relax and rejuvenate.
And here's the most difficult advice to follow: don't let classroom problems affect your emotional wellbeing and your ability to enjoy life away from
Make a real effort to be happy. Your students need a joyful teacher each day!
8. Not Asking For Help
Teachers can be a proud bunch. Our job requires superhuman skills, so we often strive to appear as superheroes who can handle any problem that
comes our way.
But that simply can't be the case. Don't be afraid to appear vulnerable, admit mistakes, and ask your colleagues or administrators for assistance.
Look around your school and you will see centuries of teaching experience represented by your fellow teachers. More often than not, these
professionals are generous with their time and advice.
Ask for help and you just might discover that you're not as alone as you thought you were.
9. Being Overly Optimistic And Too Easily Crushed
This pitfall is one that new teachers should be especially careful to avoid. New teachers often join the profession because they are idealistic,
optimistic, and ready to change the world! This is great because your students (and veteran teachers) need your fresh energy and innovative ideas.
But don't venture into Pollyanna land. You'll only end up frustrated and disappointed. Recognize that there will be tough days where you want to
throw in the towel. There will be times when your best efforts aren't enough.
Know that the tough times will pass, and they are a small price to pay for teaching's joys.
10. Being Too Hard On Yourself
Teaching is hard enough without the additional challenge of mental anguish over slip-ups, mistakes, and imperfections.
Nobody's perfect. Even the most decorated and experience teachers make poor decisions every so often.
Forgive yourself for the day's blemishes, erase the slate, and gather your mental strength for the next time it's needed.
Don't be your own worst enemy. Practice the same compassion that you show your students by turning that understanding on yourself.