Teachers with drive

Another of Buckalew’s points has to do with being driven to stay current. I would twist this around to say that a teacher must be a learner. It is not acceptable to ever reach a plateau of knowledge, level off, and stop learning or you thwart the intrinsic ethos that makes a teacher engaging to the student. When you stop learning, you by default stop teaching (in the real sense of that term) because you give up on the fuel that has been firing the relationship between you and your students.

And in our day of teaching this is rough. On the one hand, you have the teacher’s desire to learn, to grow, to spend time in contemplation; to exercise all the skills we are seeking to instill in our students. But then there is the other hand of how much we feel is necessary in our average day. The pace of our lives prevents us from being what we want in our students and this makes our goals that much further away. If the student cannot look into the teacher’s life and see a consuming desire to read, to write, to think, to contemplate, to worship, to value truth, goodness, and beauty in actual terms of things done, we will not instill such in them. They will realize the emptiness of our words if our works do not preach louder still.

So a quality school is to be full of quality teachers, and at the heart of quality teaching is being a great learner, which means everything else should be centered around the acts of learning in the teacher’s life. And a good lead teacher (head master) will have to lead the other teachers in this regard, and encourage them in such. And the leader will ensure that the school is set up to cultivate such things. We have a lot of work to do. See: I have always said teaching is a very selfish endeavor.


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