The importance of teachers

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As I have been a student for 11 years now and have had lots of teachers, I have noticed that teachers are amazing and yet it’s not shown by students as much as it should be. Every student should appreciate every teacher and thank them however and whenever they can.

Here are a few stories from my personal life of teachers I appreciate:

In elementary school, I had a hard time learning. I was just shy of being diagnosed with a learning disability. In the fifth grade my teacher Crissy Vandercook set me aside from the class and helped me. She would sit me down and go over everything that I was having trouble with. When we would have spelling tests I would sit in the back of the room with her, and she would help sound out each word and explain why the word was spelled that way it was to me. Because of her, I was able to spell better and understand English more.

In middle school, I was a shy little girl that would never talk to anyone, wouldn’t speak out in class and did not have very many friends. In seventh grade, my English teacher Chris Stevenson really pulled me out of my comfort zone and helped me realize what I could do. The first day he came in screaming, and I knew that this year would be different, and I was so scared. Throughout the year we all came out of our comfort zones, as randomly we would have to present something, talk in front of the class, sing or do something else that we all thought would be embarrassing. To quote Stevenson we all “brought the hammer” and left our comfort zones behind, preparing us for a whole other world outside of ourselves.

In high school, I have a lot more teachers, a lot less difficulty and a lot more stress. Lots of teachers in high school are kind, fun, engaging, understanding, respecting, caring and have high expectations for all their students. Some care about their students and take the time to get to know them and understand them. English teacher, Mike Klopfenstein and P.E. teacher Matt Taylor took the time to get to know and connect with me and the other students. They listen and are concerned, they give advice and help students with anything they need even if it doesn’t have anything to do with school. They become a great part of the students’ lives and become like family, someone to talk to whenever necessary.

Not every teacher has the same kind of attributes, but the best ones are a mix of all these things. All teachers make a difference in students’ lives. Every teacher helps, teaches and prepares students in one way or another. Teachers are shaping the world. They’re building the future, and yet they are not respected, underappreciated and underpaid.

Every teacher teaches a kid something, whether that is how to read and write or what the history of America was like. Without teachers there would be no doctors, scientists, astronauts or good everyday people. Teachers teach us so much about the fundamentals of life.

Respect is “esteem for or a sense of the worth or excellence of a person, a personal quality or ability or something considered as a manifestation of a personal quality or ability.” Many students and people don’t always respect teachers. According to a Harris poll, students’ respect for teachers dropped from 79% to 31%.  As a student the only way to pay a teacher is by giving respect, but there are students that do not pay respect to teachers because they think by doing so they will compromise on their own high standards or they just don’t care to give respect. As a teacher spends so much time on students, doing what is good and right for them, they deserve respect from everyone.

On average, Indiana teachers only made $54,308 in 2017, according to the National Education Association. While $54,308 isn’t a bad number, teachers spend lots of time at their job. They spend the day teaching and dealing with kids, then after school they may help other students, grade assignments and plan out the next day. According to the National Education Association, teacher salaries declined the most from 2000 to 2017 in Indiana by 15.72%.

Teachers are a part of everyone’s lives. Whether it’s big or small, they make an impact. Everyone should pay more respect and thank teachers more often. Teachers deserve more from every one of us.

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