By Emily Pottinger
Assistant Professor, College of Education
Education always seems to be a hot topic of conversation. For teachers this is not just a job, but a way of life. It is a calling. Sometimes, it is beneficial to be reminded of why teachers choose to teach. Not only is knowing the “why” important for the students, but it is important for teachers and their practice. Knowing why we do something helps us understand ourselves, can help drive and motivate us and can help us cut out some not-so-healthy practices, habits or clutter in our lives. This got me thinking. Why do my fellow teachers teach? Do they know their “why”? What better way to find out than to ask?
A few colleagues and I had an opportunity to survey some fellow teachers about the reason why they teach. What started like any other survey ended up becoming quite a powerful learning experience. The results were so moving that I was inspired to compile them into a list of the top reasons why teachers do what they do. Read our top ten reasons, share with your fellow teachers and never forget WHY you teach!
- To help empower, prepare and have a positive impact on all populations of learners, future generations, future teachers and communities, whether it is kindergarten or college-age students.
- To inspire students to achieve their goals and become independent, productive members of society.
- To learn! Teaching provides a way for you to continue to learn and grow. Teachers continually grow and learn from students, peers and the community. In addition, the profession allows teachers to learn and refine many skills, including instructional, academic, leadership and communication skills.
- To fulfill a calling. For many, teaching is a calling from God. I teach to fulfill His calling for my life.
- To share a passion and a love for learning and discovery, and hopefully help students find their own passion.
- To make a difference in our students’ lives by cultivating in them a love for education and self-improvement.
- To serve, help, uplift and make a difference. To teach others is probably the best service industry there is.
- To provide first hand encouragement and support to students and see them grow and develop.
- To continually grow and develop professionally. The constant challenge keeps me going– there is always something I can improve. Every day presents new and different challenges.
- To cultivate and develop authentic relationships with my students. I always enjoy caring for my students and working with them personally.
If you feel called to start a career in teaching for any of the reasons above, consider joining our prestigious College of Education at Grand Canyon University. Visit our website or click the Request More Information button on this page to learn more about beginning a life in education.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Grand Canyon University.