Teachers and their Teachings

Madeline - Wexford, Pennsylvania
Entered on October 30, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

I like to go to school. This may sound strange coming from a ninth grade student, but I enjoy coming to school each day and learning new things. But lately, I have not wanted to go to school. This feeling comes from certain teachers, and how they teach. Actually, how the don’t teach.

Particularly in math, there is not much teaching. It seems to me that the higher the level of math, the less teaching goes on. I especially don’t have time being a student-athlete to also be a teacher. It doesn’t make sense for me to go home and do my geometry homework at ten o’clock and teach it to myself only to come to school with questions the next day and not have the teacher answer them because he is “grading the homework like a quiz” and I can’t ask for help on a quiz. Then what’s the point? If I learn to do the problem wrong on the homework, won’t I do the problem wrong on the quiz? And the test? Then, overall, I might get a bad grade on my report card and get in trouble with my parents. All this stress for not having a teacher teach me a certain problem? I would rather have a horrible teacher than no teacher at all.

My friends also suffer from this lack of teaching, it’s not just me. Riding the bus home from one of our many after-school field hockey games, my friend asked me, “Why don’t teachers teach? Isn’t that what teachers are for?” I didn’t have an answer to her question.

Not all teachers leave the teaching up to their students. Eighth grade algebra was one of the hardest subjects for me, and I was fortunate to have a good teacher as my math teacher. In algebra, the class would come in everyday and learn something new. For homework we would be assigned homework on what we learned that, as reinforcement, and in class then next day, we went over the homework and my teacher explained any misunderstandings. This is how math class should work; it was an ideal structure of a class for me. In eighth grade algebra, I earned a high “A” on my report card, and I learned my algebra well.

Math is a subject that many students, including myself, struggle in. I didn’t plan to be a teacher as well as a student, field hockey player, and swimmer. I have many things going in my life right now, for this is freshman year of high school, and I don’t have time to teach myself geometry. Teachers play an important role in a person’s life; they can many effects on their students. If the teacher becomes the “baby-sitter” of the class, then that valuable teacher-student interaction disappears. I believe that everyone should have a good teacher, or at least one that teaches.