As Nagaland continues to battle the rampant problem of proxy teachers and unsuitable learning environment and infrastructure in some areas, the high demand for education increases every year. Students want an education and parents want a future for their children. There is a growing demand from parents and students for quality teachers who are committed with a passion to their professions, and in return a suitable amount of respect demanded towards the profession itself. Teachers have the difficult task of engaging the minds of a diverse group of students that sometimes require one to extend their knowledge beyond the textbook and the confines of the classroom. It leads one to question, what exactly makes for an ideal teacher? This question is frequently asked to students in the classroom and surveys indicate that students also require adapting to teaching styles that may be suitable to one but which are not for the other. As an educator, we must also ask ourselves how far are we willing to commit ourselves towards trying to become an ideal teacher for a vast majority of students or a select few?
Proxy Teacher versus the Ideal Teacher
A teacher plays the most important role in the life of every person. According to the Hindu mythology the importance of a teacher is greater than the importance of God. Kabir Das, the great poet of medieval India also said that, “it is right that God is the master of the world. Every function of the world is regulated by the order of God and the main target of the human being is to secure his place near the foot of God but one cannot reach God without the proper guidance of teachers.” Even the great personalities like Rama, Arjuna, Tulsidas, Chandragupta Maurya, Mahatma Gandhi etc were great because of the guidance of their teacher or Guru.
A teacher is a respectable profession in our society because it is the teacher who molds a child into an established person. It is the responsibility of a teacher to make a person become a good citizen. What the child learns from a teacher has great impact on his/her future. Teaching is a noble profession but nowadays we see that people opt for this profession only as a means of their livelihood and without giving a thought to the sacrifice, commitment and dedication it demands. However, it is not true in the case of those teachers who have the passion for teaching. One can be a good teacher but to become an ideal teacher one needs to have the spirit of devotion and dedication. An ideal teacher is rare to find but it is not impossible either. We have all had a teacher in our life who played an important role in molding us into who we are now; or maybe we still have one whom we look up to and who has impacted our life a great deal. I had one such ideal teacher who inspired me in many ways and his name was P.K. Chakraborty. He was my English teacher during my school days. He was the one who influenced me the most. I steer the ship of my destiny by his examples and advice. He once told me that, knowledge is not the end but the end of all knowledge is wisdom. Every book is our book. We should keep our eyes and ears open at all times and never stop learning as long as we live. He was a guide in all walks of my life. He was a person of noble character, a man who believed in the idea of simple living and high thinking. He was thorough in his subject and his method of teaching was very impressive. He taught with care in a clear and audible voice. Whenever there was any problem with the students or if any student committed a mistake, he would handle them tactfully. He is one person who is responsible for molding my character and my career. I can never forget him as long as I live and I am still very proud of my English teacher.
Academic achievements are not the only requirement for a teacher but an ideal teacher should help in developing the all round personality of the student. A good teacher brings into play the hidden mental power of the students and must be a man of ideas. Thus, letting the students acquire self-respect and dignity from the teacher. He should be creative and not only spread information but also develop the love for learning. A teacher should not allow discipline to be taken lightly for the sake of showing love to a student. He should be a cultured man, honest to himself, to his student and to his profession; while having a sense of duty and responsibility.
Teachers are regarded as the backbone of the society. They are the greatest contributors in building up the character of the student and helping them to become an ideal citizen of the country. Teachers arouse the students with the light of knowledge and remove all kinds of ignorance. Yes, teaching is not an easy profession. There are many problems for a teacher that makes the profession more complicated than it has to be. The work of a teacher is physically and mentally challenging. A teacher needs to use a lot of energy in the classroom coupled with his personal and family commitment. Also, dealing with the students with difficult behavior can be stressful. However, there are also substantial benefits and awards for those who choose this career with passion and work hard to become a role model and inspire the students. An ideal teacher is the greatest asset of a country; and if the role of a teacher is to teach then the role of a student must be to learn.