Few years back, I use to teach. I am not a teacher anymore. I wouldn’t call myself a teacher. I would have called myself Instructor, computer instructor. It was the start of my career. In engineering you need to train in a professional organization called Industrial Training (IT). My college had the job as an Instructor for me. I had dreamed of becoming a programmer writing big complicated software codes. I don’t know what they saw in me that would classify me as a good Instructor. But as beggars are not choosers and I was the last one who was without an IT assignment, I reluctantly took the job.
I was never made for a teacher’s job. I could never teach. All my life, I have been a back bencher. I was the one who applauded for everybody. I never had an opinion about anything. If my school teacher never took attendance, then she wouldn’t have missed me at all. I was happy sitting in the audience. I never tried to answer even the questions asked in class. With this profile, if anybody had told me that one day I would teach, I would have laughed. But I did. I thought for 2 years before I switched to my current profile.
The first day was a nightmare. I don’t know what I thought. But slowly I got a grip of it. It was kind of easy, because it was always 2-3 students. After six months I joined another bigger institute.
This firm had the contact to teach government employees. I was 25 at that time. The first day I had to face a class of 20 women. Let alone teach, I could not even control them. Imagine a class of 20 women all of them have put years of service in a government office, have left studies long time back and forced to study a complicated subject like computers when most of them hardly knew what computers was. But we both knew we had a job to do, even if we didn’t like it at all. So after a couple of days, it was more of an interaction than teaching. I knew I had to get them involved rather than dumping my knowledge on them. I learned to teach, more from the feedback received from them. I started enjoying teaching, laying challenges for them, interacting with them. Suddenly I realized I could speak. I could talk. I could interact with people
I gained confidence. I started thinking ways and means to improve. For the next one and half year, I taught computer basics to number of people. Most of the students never had seen a computer. A number of them had left studying. Most of them just attended because their promotion depended on it.
I use to have students of different types. Seniors and juniors colleague sitting together. Boss and subordinates sitting together. These were the years where I myself learned to communicate. I learned to speak. I learned to voice my opinions. Teaching has taught me a lot and has contributed considerably in what I am today.
I use to enjoy my session. There was so much fun around. The spot exams and weekly exam brought the competition among students. Even a junior clerk could outscore his/her boss and the topper was congratulated by everybody.
At the end of each course, the students in the batch used to give all of us farewell party. That is when you realize that you will actually miss these people. I still remember my first farewell party. Me any my fellow instructors received lots of gift that day. A lot of flowers bouquets, many small gifts and a lot of good wishes. That day while going home, my hands were full with gifts and flowers. Students use to come to us for advice. They use to ask what courses they should ask their children to take. A lot of students use to call us home and ask us questions.
I think Teachers play a significant role in the way we grow. From school to college, they in some way influence our life. They are responsible for moldings our character. Looking back at my educational days, I am what I am because mostly due to my teachers. True I gained confidence in my professional career but the values were imparted by my teachers. I may have not interacted with them much but still they have left an impact on me. Our parents are also our teachers because the teaching starts the day when you are born.
In India we celebrate 5th September as Teacher day. It’s celebrated widely in schools and colleges. After years out of colleges and schools its time we thanked the people who made us what we are today.
Happy Teachers Day