Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Top Ten List: What Motivates Me?

In Motivation from bluyonder, Greg Whitby tells us,

“What motivates me and many of my colleagues is a desire to give young people the best opportunity in life by giving them the gift of education.”

This post made me think about all the things that motivated me to teach. I love teaching and I never regretted for a minute that I went into teaching. But what makes me love it so much? Why is it so important to me?

I think it is important every now and then to look at what is motivating us. Let’s face it; the news is full of stories about how terrible education (or schools or teachers) are doing in our society. Not to mention the low pay, liabilities, paperwork, and responsibilities. But no one really talks about the good things because the good news doesn’t sell. We tend to get caught up in all the negative-ness around us and forget to look at the positive reasons why we do what we do.

Now that the school year has started and we have gotten busy in our routines and grading papers, it is time to step back and look at ourselves. Reflect on what we are doing and not forget about why we are doing it (I know for a fact it isn’t for the big money we get for teaching!). I believe if we think of the positive results of what we are doing, it will reenergize us. We sometimes need to be our best support system and give ourselves a pat on the back instead of just depending on others to hold us up.

Here are some of the things that motivate me to teach (these are not in any order of importance):

1. The smile on students’ faces when all of a sudden they understand a new skill.
2. Seeing students, who think they can’t do something, suddenly realize that all things are possible.

3. Sharing knowledge that students may not know.

4. Parents who appreciate me and encourage me to continue what I’m doing.

5. Learning something new along with my students.

6. Knowing in their hearts, these students really want to be successful.

7. Facing the challenge of teaching students who have not been successful in the past and seeing them become successful in the present.

8. Talking to former students who remember me and finding out how they are and what they are doing now.

9. Students who begin to ask questions and are thirsting to learn more.

10. The hope that I will influence someone else in a positive way.

What motivates you?

Original image: 'Motivation' by: Peterjon Smith


Anonymous said...

Sometimes teachers just need a reminder of why we do what we do. It amazes when I have a former student come back to thank me for doing what I do/did!

Bob said...

Well written achievements. Congratulation.

May i ask if we can exchange link with my blog. Please comment me

BookChook said...

Pat, I think what motivates me most is my own love of learning. I just love finding out stuff! And sharing that love, or better still, igniting it in others, is one of the many pleasures in my life.