Tell us who your favourite teacher is
You may already know that Prime Minister Julia Gillard was live blogging on iVillage this morning to talk all things education as part of her campaign to find Australia's Favourite Teacher. We asked our iVoice bloggers to share their favourite teachers. Join in and add yours in the comments below:
Karen Andrews writes:
Bern Morley writes:
Who was my favourite teacher? My immediate reaction to this question was my Year One teacher, Mrs Adams. Because you know, who doesn’t love their first? My 5 year old son is currently totally enamoured with his Prep Teacher, Miss Sue, to the point where he has already asked for and established her relationship status.
I joke but I would have to say, my favourite teacher during the 12 years that I was in school, would have to be Mrs Graham in Year 7. I’m not sure if you remember being 12 or if you have a child that age, but it is possibly one of the hardest, most awkward times in your life. It’s that age where you are not quite an adult but you are certainly no longer a child. Mrs Graham however, through pure love for her job and her students, helped us through what was quite the defining year. The crushes on boys and the subsequent heartbreak from said boys were all helped and smoothed over by our very canny and knowledgeable teacher. Not only that, she just made learning fun.
I distinctly remember saying goodbye to her on my last day of Primary School and it feeling like I was losing a best friend. I learnt some years later that she died from breast cancer, quite young. The thing is that I am positive it was her passion for her job and the support and understanding that she gave us that prepared me for my high school years. And for that Mrs Graham, I thank you.
Jo Abi writes:
When I was nine I contracted glandular fever. I missed months of school as a result and it took quite a bit of cajoling from my parents to convince my teacher not to repeat me. Ms. Pepper was my name. She was the first adult in my life to offer me unsolicited praise and something she said set me on the course that lead to my chosen– radio.
I was standing in front of the class talking about the news topic. As I made my way back to my desk Ms. Pepper said, “You have a really good voice Josephine.” I thanked her and sat down. “You should become a teacher,” she added. “Think about it.” At nine years of age and coming back from a very aggressive disease, I could only nod through
confusion at her words but think about them I did. I have a good voice. I have a good voice. I had a good voice.
I have no doubt that if I’d taken her advice and become a teacher my voice would be shredded by now (yell much?) but her words made me think about what made me special. I couldn’t play an instrument like the other kids. I couldn’t play sport. I didn’t have a big house. But I had a great voice. If it wasn’t for Ms. Pepper I wouldn’t have thrown myself into public speaking, debating and radio with the gusto that I did. I’ve always wanted to track her down and thank her.
Teachers have the power to shape and influence our children and even if they were each paid a million dollars a year they’d still be underpaid as far as I’m concerned. The good ones anyway!
Anna Spargo-Ryan writes:
It's impossible for me to pinpoint my favourite teacher, but it would be fair to say there's a running theme. When I think about my schooling experience, those who taught me to love language shine like grammatically sound beacons.
My Year 8 English teacher was a man I'd known since kindergarten. He had been teaching at my school for decades, pushing bright little faces out into the world. He was huge, like Father Christmas, complete with fluffy white beard and rosy cheeks. Most days he was gruff and impatient, but I liked that, in the same way that I imagine the real masters of literature were also gruff and impatient.
Of course, I'd later learn that the ruddy complexion was diabetes and the fact that he smelled like a chimney was more due to his smoking like one, but I adored him. In my memory, we spent long, lazy afternoons reading aloud from Wind in the Willows and Macbeth, with the fans whirring above our heads and the air crackling as it does in an Adelaide summer.
A couple of years ago I heard that he'd died. I wonder if he realised how many love affairs with words he had inspired.
Stacey Roberts writes:
The year was 1995. I was 15, full of angst, attitude, and love for the written word.
Miss Miller was my English teacher. She let me read magazines in the back of the class, encouraged me to deconstruct Metallica songs as school assignments, allowed us to watch episodes of The Young Ones in class time, and politely accepted our mangling of Shakespeare presentations.
She never pushed, always led by example, always allowed us to find what we enjoyed, what kept our attention and related that to lessons we needed to learn. She was always approachable, always quietly cheerful and genuinely believed if she loved what she did every day, part of that would rub off onto us.
It’s a rare person who can take a compulsory subject that at least half the teenage class is going think is a drag, and consistently provide an amiable environment of learning.
I often wonder if she ever knew what kind of impact she had on me. I wonder if it matters.
Who's your favourite teacher?