Why I Have Chosen to Become a Teacher
People choose careers for many different reasons. Many choose a career because it pays well or because there is a large job market for it. Neither of these reasons was a factor in my decision to pursue a career in education, though. I decided to become a teacher because I want to have an impact on and help others. Two people have served as examples of how teaching will allow me to do this: my mother (a first grade teacher), and one of her former students.
My mother has taught for almost 30 years. She is, without a doubt, one of the most exceptional teachers in the profession. She has perfected an effective teaching method that blends knowledge, firmness, discipline, and—most importantly—compassion. For as long as I can remember, her former students have approached her in public. Even though some of them are in their mid-thirties, they still call her “Mrs. King.” She has been invited to weddings, and has wept at the funerals of former students. By observing this, it is obvious to me that she has had a significant impact on these students’ lives. It is also clear to me that they have had a profound influence on her. Like my mother, I hope to be the kind of teacher whom students remember.
One year there was a girl named Keri in my mother’s class. She had become completely blind because of a tumor on her optic nerve. My mother would often tell me stories about her students, and my first reaction upon hearing of Keri was to feel sorry for her. I imagined a sad, sullen little girl who found no joy in life, but I was pleasantly surprised when I met her. She had beautiful red hair and the most adorable smile, which she showcased often. She was talkative, and she loved to sing. Even though she had a disabling condition, her attitude was extremely positive, which impressed me. One day, I was filing papers, and the students were doing an activity in which Keri could not participate. Keri asked if she could help me file, and she enjoyed it so much that she soon became my permanent helper. She remained upbeat even as her beautiful hair began falling out from chemotherapy treatments. Instead of becoming depressed, she felt thrilled that she was now allowed to wear her adorable hats in the school building. In fact, her positive outlook on life made such an impact on me that I eagerly anticipated my days working with her. I loved the feeling I had when I was around Keri. It was during this time that I realized with certainty that I wanted to become a teacher.
As a teacher, I hope to work with elementary students such as Keri. At that age, everyday things cause exclamations of wonder, and the children have completely unjaded views on life. I know that all students are not as...