On Indian Teachers’ Day a message to today’s teachers

Teachers need passion to mould society & uphold values

Society

September 5, 2022

/ By / Chennai

On Indian Teachers’ Day a message to today’s teachers

Marlene Morais is a renowned academician in Chennai

Like with every other sector of the economy, the world of teaching, too, has undergone a dramatic change over the past few years, especially since the coronavirus pandemic outbreak. In today’s world, a teacher needs to face up to new challenges posed by different expectations of parents and children as well as use of technology in teaching, writes Marlene Morais, renowned academician, former Principal and current Advisor of Guru Nanak College, Chennai.

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On this Indian Teachers’ Day, I would like to draw a comparison between the teachers of yesteryears and the teachers of the present. Gone are those days where a child at school looked up to the teacher as the supreme mentor in their lives. Whatever the teachers said was God’s word and they would obey the words with utmost sincerity without an atom of doubt.

Then, teachers were highly regarded and greatly respected. Whereas today, teachers face a lot of challenges from the parents, from the media, and even from the children themselves. The parents are no longer willing to leave the teacher to do the task of teaching. They bring all kinds of pressures on the teachers and also compare and rate the teachers. They never like the teachers chiding their children and they feel the teacher has no right to punish an errant child.

The media has played a pivotal role in trolling the noble profession. Not only do the teachers get trolled for disciplining the child, but even the schools are judged by the media. They are under the watchful eye of the media and are not left alone to do their work with dedication. Working under constant fear and threat of criticism, the teacher’s noble task of imparting education is done without the freedom that one would normally enjoy.

To teach with passion is no longer the order of the day. Similarly, the teachers are facing competition from various other sources because today’s children are taught by hi-tech apps which use Artificial Intelligence and so on. The teacher has to compete with the knowledge that the child gets from beyond the classroom.

At the higher education level, the college teachers are also under heavy stress these days.  The profession is no longer restricted to the love of teaching only. Today, a teacher is expected to teach, to do research and administrative work and much more.

A teacher used to be the only source of information and learning for the students till very recently. With the advent of the internet and technological advancements, the student has access to a lot more information or data than before. Sometimes, a student feels that he knows more than his humble teacher. As a result, values have taken a backseat and today value education has to be inculcated as a subject per se.

There is a great transformation in the teaching methodology. In particular, I would say that the teaching methodology was again one of the takeaways from the Covid-19 pandemic. Now, you will find that blended learning has come to stay. So, the teachers had to adapt to the use of technology and they had to keep themselves abreast of holding remote classes and not being in near contact with the students. However, it has shrunk the classroom and now a teacher can reach out to students across the globe without any difficulty.

In my experience, students who have taken dance or art classes online have excelled without being in close contact with their teacher. There are changes in all professions, similarly there are changes in the teaching profession. The yesteryear’s concept “Teacher is always right’’ is long gone and presently every student is now faced with multiple teachers and ever-changing classroom scenarios.

My message on this Teachers’ Day is that only those who have a passion for teaching should come into the teaching profession and that will make a big difference to the society and the values that we as teachers uphold.

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