Jamie Balfour

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Reflecting on myself as a teacher

Reflecting on myself as a teacher

When I was younger I had several really cool teachers who remained firmly as inspiration throughout my life. Contradicting that, I had some really bad teachers and also some who were very unfriendly or intimidating.

I particularly remember the one really unfriendly teacher, a Modern Languages teacher, who in my first year I would talk to her about my German uncle and try and make bridges with her because, in reality, I was a shy little lad who was quite intimidated by her. She would often talk for a few seconds before rushing off - often as though she hated talking to me so much she had to get out of there. There were times when I hoped I could cash in on those moments. For example, she was a cruel teacher in the sense if you didn't do well on a test she would make you stand up in front of the class and state why you failed - I mean that's bullying.

I was honestly scared beyond belief doing those tests. But as the teacher continued to make a fool out of me, I would often use that to make a silly joke and make the class laugh, much to the teacher's disappointment. You see, that teacher, being such a bully, was using the behavioural method of teaching - do well or face the consequences - and it wasn't actually working. I hated Languages and it was all down to her, had it not been for my lovely third-year teacher, I would have never wanted to speak German again.

I vowed never to become like her as a teacher in my later life.

Now that I am a teacher I have noticed some similarities between her and me. I have some of the qualities of the teacher I never wanted to become. Unfortunately whilst having to deal with behaviour within one of my classes I dropped from being a teacher pupils respected to one that pupils really disliked. My classroom environment was very friendly before but I heard people within the classroom after this mentioning that they really don't like the atmosphere in my classroom - from one extreme to the other. 

I vowed to not be like this, and now I must make amends to try and get back to making my classroom a welcoming environment. 

Posted by jamiebalfour04 in Education
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