Ten years. I sometimes can’t believe that I’ve been teaching for a little over ten years now. This means two things: 1) I’m starting to feel dirt old and 2) I’ve had the fortune of encountering all kinds of different, fascinating students. Students can be fascinating for many different reasons. I have had students that were incredibly receptive, and quite easy to teach. I have had others whose behavior was bad enough to make my nose-hairs go gray. Through the years, there are students that will stay in your memories, while others will gently drift away over time. The names that stick are generally the extremes: from the extremely well-behaved to the exceptionally unruly, from the most gifted students to your students who struggle most.
Every single one of these interactions are important for a teacher to experience, even the ones that test your resolve. How we we deal with these students, helps us to become better, more experienced teachers. It is also through these actions that a teacher is able to determine which type of student is easiest for them to reach. The students that are easiest to reach become the teacher’s favorite students. Whether a not a teacher is willing to admit it, I truly believe all teachers have their favorites. Even if it’s not one student in particular, teachers (especially the experienced ones) have clear picture of the type of pupil they want to teach (respectively).
As for me, the kids that I really enjoy teaching are the well-behaved kids, just being honest. I enjoy teaching hard-working students that don’t take themselves too seriously. I like it when a kid gets super excited about what I’m teaching and takes an active approach to learning. I also enjoy teaching that type of kid that can be outspoken when the time comes (i.e.-when I’m asking questions) and also be silent/well-behaved when it’s necessary (i.e.-when I’m trying to calm class).
No two teachers will enjoy teaching the same type of pupil. Though quite rare, I’ve come across teachers who simply love teaching children who don’t behave. There are others who are able to connect with special needs children. Whatever the case may be, to each is own.
I have a theory which I think, in small part at least, holds true. Teachers are drawn to students who are like them. Of course there are exceptions to this rule, but odds are if the teacher was a straight-laced, studious student, they’ll probably enjoy teaching the same type of child. If the teacher used to be a class clown, more than likely, they’ll have a special place in their minds/hearts reserved for the class clown they are now teaching.
Types of Students
You’ve probably heard of this guy or girl. This is the one that always tells the jokes and keeps the students in stitches. It’s nice if they’re on your side…if they’re not, they can really cause you to lose control of your class.
The Bad Boy/The Bad Girl
This is that student you have to watch like a hawk; trouble seems to be their constant companion. Turn your back on this kid and you might just get knifed, lol…well not lol at some schools (not here in Japan so much, maybe).
The Resident Class Genius
Ever had those elementary school kids that were reading way above their grade level, or could do high level mathematics at an early age? These kids can be an exciting challenge, and it really keeps you on your intellectual toes.
The Space Cadet
Yes I know it sounds a bit mean, but it doesn’t have to be, somebody out there has had that kid that is physically in class, but never seems to be there mentally. It’s like their brain is on another planet. You’d be surprised to find out just how gifted these students really are.
I haven’t really had many incidences of this in Japan, but seeing bullying really bothers me. Generally there is some underlying issue causing them to act out.
What other types of students are there?
What type of student do you like teaching most?
If you’ve never taught before, what type of student do you think you’d enjoy teaching most?
Thanks for reading everybody, I’ll see you next time,
P.S.-WAIT!! One more question. What type of student were you, during your elementary, middle school, and high school years. Please be honest, LOL 🙂
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