Being a young teacher in these times


Unlike in the past when female teachers were often way older than their learners, when most of them were mothers who had families back home (husbands and kids), today we have a lot of young people who have passion for teaching; as a result they choose teaching as a career.

These young teachers mostly graduate and start working while they are still young, with their age ranging between 22 and 30, where the age gap between them and their learners could be four to five or six years’ difference. Most have fewer responsibilities, as they have no kids of their own, so they are still having fun, probably the fun they never had while in school, or they feel they are still too young to settle.

Being a young teacher today means being a teacher to young boys and girls, who – while you are busy teaching – are fantasising about you. When these boys and girls see you, they do not see a teacher, they see a girl who can be their girlfriend, or a boy who has the potential to be their boyfriend.

It also means being a teacher to young girls and boys who want to compete with you – for female teachers it gets even worse.

It means being a teacher to young girls, who probably have a crush on your boyfriend/husband, have been in a relationship with him, or are still in a secret relationship with him. It means having most of these young teenage girls show you attitude, not wanting to pay attention to you in the classroom, disrespecting you and creating gossip about you.

It means going to a club or a party and meeting your students there. They will be partying and drinking, without caring much about their teacher being around. You may be drinking non-alcoholic drinks and they will be drinking hot stuff.

It means having old colleagues complain about your dressing code every day. No matter how decent it may look, they will always have something negative to say about it. The question is: should these teachers stop going out to places, such as clubs, to avoid running into their learners?

The truth is even at private bars you will find learners these days. They are everywhere there is a party or alcohol. Are teachers not entitled to social life at all?

All in all, being a young teacher in the modern days of globalisation is a very big challenge. Therefore, teachers should maintain professionalism everywhere they find themselves. They should make sure they are careful about what they do in public, because it can be used against them in the classroom.

Cecilia Namakasa



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