If you were to ask me what I want to be when I 'grow up' my answer would be 'a grad student'. I'd love to just...do research my entire life... so I could be a prof at a university. I like to learn things - and in that setting it would be continuous learning. However, this post
made me remember why I've always wanted to be a highschool teacher. When people ask me about university, and who my favorite prof was, I always think about it really hard and end up saying "actually, my high school teacher Mr. Smith was the one that helped me with university the most." ...And that's not a word of a lie.
I had him the first time in grade 11 for ancient civilizations, grade 12 economics and again in grade 12 for philosophy. Actually the only reason I took economics was because he was teaching the course. (This also happened to be the class I met Bilal in...curse that bloody class, curse it all to hell.) Im pretty bad with economics, but he made it work for me. I ended up doing the huge essay of the semester on the lock out that was going on in the NHL and zero sum. I got a really decent mark on the essay actually, which suprised the hell out of me. (The really funny thing was, at the beginning of the semester Cory and Bilal made a bet for who would get the highest mark...I told them that I would...and they laughed at me knowing my economic abilities, and that I hadn't taked grade 11 economics. Cory and Bilal ended up getting 70's where as I got a 92. Suckas.)
Anyway, Mr. Smith preped us all for university. His research method that I hated so much then is the only way I do research now for essays. He always told us not to be afraid to use "I" in an essay...all through highschool we were told this was horrible form and that if we ever did it, we would automatically lose 10%. Mr. Smith encouraged it. He often used the socratic method of teaching which was really effective in making us listening. ...He told us all these things about university that we didn't know, like that the profs only thought of us as numbers, and that where he'll give us unlimited help with essays, a prof will probably just point you in the direction of the library. (Mr. Smith, btw, was a prof at McMaster University in Hamilton before becoming a highschool - almost not getting the job for being over qualified. He has a PhD in ancient civilizations and speaks like a zillion different languages.)
My point is...Mr. Smith developed a relationship with us. He wasn't the only teacher I did that with, Mr. Fernback, Mr. Wolfraim and Mr. Armstrong as well. All four teachers were phenomenal. (Fernie was my geography teacher, Wolfy was media studies and Armstrong was Drama and staff supervisor of the sears drama festival plays.) These are the teachers that will always stick out to me. I had Fernback in grade 9, 11 and 12, same with Armstrong. So they saw me go through all my weird stages of teenage-hood, and knew me really well by the end of highschool. It was really sad to leave highschool, just because I knew I'd never get relationships with my teachers like that again.
But I would love to be a highschool teacher, andbe a hardass like Mr. Smith that the kids hate at the time, but then appreciate so much afterwards and feel like they really deserve the marks they get because they earned them. As great as university teaching would be, with all the research and huge classes - highschool just seems more personal, and almost like more fun. Anyway, there is no point to this post. Sorry if you actually got to this point of it :D