Advantages and disadvantages of being a teacher – This profession is often regarded as the noblest profession in the world. It is not because it is the highest pay, or because it requires advanced degrees to work in this profession.
The reason is because of the responsibility it comes with. It takes more than effort to shape the minds of young people or even old people (in the case of adult education). It requires great skill and precision.
Sadly, a lot of people would choose to pursue other career paths than go into teaching. The reason is that they feel it is not rewarding enough, and that teachers are not accorded enough prestigious recognition, unlike other professions.
Either way, we shall be discussing the teaching profession and what it means to be a teacher. After that, we shall be looking at other relevant pieces of information as they relate to the topic.
WHO IS A TEACHER?
A teacher is anyone who is saddled with the duty or responsibility of helping students to acquire knowledge or the relevant information which they ought to learn in school. The teacher also helps the students to understand and inculcate in them ethical values like competence, virtue, and so on.
Teaching may be done either in the classroom which is a formal setting or in an informal setting like the house (homeschooling). Whatever the setting might be, the fact that knowledge is being imparted by an instructor is enough to categorize such as teaching.
Teaching is mostly done by paid professionals who are employed either by the private or public school system. In some cases though, some people take it upon themselves to teach children in extreme conditions like war-torn zones or poverty regions for free. These categories are mostly attached to NGOs or carrying out such services under the wings or arms of an international humanitarian organization.
Ordinarily, when people talk about a teacher, they limit them to the classroom or educational institutions. That may be correct, but the role and personality of a teacher do not begin and end in a classroom; it involves more than that.
It could also involve a situation where a motivational speaker is talking to a crowd or gathering of people and successfully imparting them knowledge they never had. Also, it can be seen through a pastor or church minister who teaches the words of the bible to the congregation.
In the end, we are trying to say that the profession involves teaching and imparting knowledge, both within and outside the classroom, by either paid or charitable professionals, and not only is knowledge imparted but other essential ethical values can also be imparted.
WHAT ARE THE ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES OF BEING A TEACHER?
Being a teacher, as we earlier stated has its ups and down. Some people who find the profession less attractive for several reasons do so not because of any special reasons, but owing to the glaring disadvantages that it offers.
On the other hand, some people find it attractive due to the plethora of advantages available for professionals in this field, as well as the profession in general. Whatever the case may be, we shall be looking at each of their advantages and disadvantages shortly.
Advantages of Being a Teacher
There are a lot of reasons why you should be a teacher. Some people see the profession as being one that is less rewarding and unattractive, but the truth is told, people tend to pass judgment on things they do not understand.
There are lots of reasons why you should choose this profession over other professions, as we shall be showing them to you shortly. These advantages or benefits of being a teacher include
More Available Job Opportunities: One of the beautiful things about the teaching profession is the available job options that exist in this profession. Statistics have shown that the profession would gain over 5% increase within the next ten years for the Kindergarten level of education and, over 7% for the profession in general, which is almost more than what is expected of other professions in the United States of America.
This shows that the profession will continue to offer employment opportunities in the nearest future. This is the case because as the population increases. So is the fact that people will need education. Therefore, this is a profession that has an employment edge over other professions.
Extensive Breaks: Most professions do not afford you the time to go on long breaks. Aside from the regular weekends and some public holidays, some career paths ensure that you continue to work.
Some career paths could even have you working through the holidays and weekends, with the excuse of better pay, or in some extreme cases, you get paid less to nothing or nothing at all for such an extensive break.
This is not the case with this profession as you have the time to go on break given the fact that schools go on long, periodic breaks various times in the year, giving you a chance to relax, rest and enjoy other things or endeavors which you will love to engage in during your free time.
Human Interaction/Bonding: One of the beautiful things about choosing a career path in this profession is the human interaction it offers. As a teacher, you end up spending most of your time around the students and this bond would go a long way to ensure that they end up being better students, and better people.
As a teacher, such human interaction would also benefit you too as you would be exposed to the vulnerability of the students, and you would have to mold them based on the ideal version of the persons they ought to be.
In the end, a relationship would be created which would go a long way in ensuring that they do not leave the good path that this bond has placed them on.
Transferrable Skills: Most people think that teaching means that you get to spend a large portion of your life in the classroom with just your knowledge of what you want to teach, and in the end, when knowledge becomes obsolete, you cannot even boast of any other skills.
This is purely untrue as the profession offers you soft skills that you can even use outside your profession as a teacher. These soft skills include public speaking, human relationship skills, listening skills, and other skills that are incidental to their skills as teachers.
As a teacher, there is no challenge when you want to quit your job for employment opportunities in other career paths outside your profession. The soft skills acquired will come in handy.
Satisfying Job: The job of a teacher is pretty tense and difficult, and in the same vein, it brings a lot of frustration when the student does not do well. It is like a builder who spends time and energy constructing a house. He goes with the plan, goes through all the necessary procedures, and believes he has done a good job. Only for the rain to come and he discovers that the roof is leaking, the house is flooded and other things which he felt were in place at the time of construction, were all faulty.
That is how a teacher feels when a student fails. But no joy is greater than when a student, using the sample and template of the teacher, ends up doing perfectly well. That is where the satisfaction comes from – the fact that the students who are taught are doing well.
Learning opportunities: Teaching allows you to learn more or retain what you have learned. Let us take for instance, during my time in high school, I would take out extra time to teach my classmates some topics which they may have difficulty in understanding.
In the end, I found out that I got to have more widened knowledge about the topic than I used to before I began teaching it to my colleagues. The secret is in the fact that the continued repetition, as well as the fact that you tend to research more about the topic before you teach it, makes it easy for you to remember and broadens your knowledge of the topic.
Creates a sense of community: When you work in this profession, it gives you the sense that you are working not in some corporate world filled with massive competition and rivalry, but within a community of professionals, bonded by their shared passion for the job.
This communal relationship extends to the students who also see their teachers as guardians, friends, siblings, or something close or more than family, as against seeing them as masters. It makes the whole learning environment easy seamlessly easy.
Everything within the profession is geared towards ensuring that this lifestyle is adopted by everyone within the profession from the teacher to the students.
Being a hero: In the army, you get rewarded with ranks for bravery and your service to the army. There are fireworks, salutes, a crowd cheering you on, and so on. That is how a hero is celebrated in that profession. In other words, you are rewarded with all sorts of gifts, elevations, and other things incidental to being a hero.
For a teacher, it is more of a personal gratification which could also be resounding especially when it comes from the mouths of the students who have greatly benefited from it.
Owing to how insignificant the profession may appear to be, most people tend to see that teachers are more unsung heroes, whose achievements could rival even that of a war hero. As people who continuously shape minds, every great mind owes that progress to a teacher somewhere. They are true heroes. As a teacher, you can get to wear this badge too.
You can feel the effect of your handiwork: No profession reaps instant results as teaching, with lightning speed. Most professions take more time before they feel the impact or effect of your work. Some take weeks, days, or in some cases, years before the effect of the work is felt.
This is not the case with this profession. The effect of this profession is such that as you are teaching, you can easily see whether or not the student understands what you are teaching, and if they do not, you have the instant chance to retract your step and try out a different method.
This chance is not available for most professions, as they either have to wait a long period to correct errors made in the line of work owing to how slow the effect of the work comes.
Benefits like pension, insurance, and so on: Teaching remains a career that is rewarding both while you are working, and while you are no longer in active success. Aside from the fulfillment you get from an illustrious career dedicated to shaping the minds and actions of people, you get to enjoy retirement benefits like a steady pension, insurance, and so on.
This opportunity is not available for people who work in most companies or another line of work, as they are required to make hay while the sun shines. They have to save and engage in various cooperative schemes to be sure that they have enough to last them through retirement.
But in this profession, you have the chance of a retirement benefit like your pension, insurance covers, and so on.
Disadvantages of Being a Teacher
As we have stated above, the advantages or benefits of being a teacher may be as overwhelming as may be, but the fact remains that there is a downside to this too.
Below, we shall be looking at the disadvantages that come with being a teacher.
Poor Salaries: The teaching profession is not exactly lucrative. Unlike various professions that would have you earning massively, with this profession, you earn little.
For instance, the basic salary of a teacher annually is $60,000 with some areas paying as much as $80,000. This falls short for someone with a college degree, whereas people in other fields or career paths with the same college degree are paid way more than that.
That being said, if you are seeking a profession that would allow you to leave a flamboyant lifestyle, spend big, and have enough to save, then sadly, you need to look out for another career path as this profession cannot help you with that.
Lack of Support from Administration: This profession enjoys the least support from administrations both of the institution and that of the state or province. It is no secret that people tend to overlook the importance of teachers.
This is an age-long complaint that has seen various administrations use their plight as mere propaganda to gain votes or score political points. On the side of the administration of the school or institutions, they mostly care about the revenue or prestigious honors that can be gotten from the school but pay little attention to the plight or well-being of the teachers.
With this lack of administrative support, it is no secret that the profession is facing more recline as days go by.
Being under scrutiny: The potter is always under constant criticism, as a saying goes. It is the same thing with a teacher because just as a potter helps to mold the clay, the teacher helps to mold the mind of the students.
Teachers face the biggest scrutiny and criticism from all angles that affect the profession. They face scrutiny from the parents or guardians of the children. They face criticism from the principal or administrators of the school, they face criticism from their colleagues, and in some cases, their students.
These scrutinizes may be good if the aim was to make the teacher better, but that does not seem to be the case, as it ends up making the teachers feel bad about themselves, coupled with the other problems they may be facing already.
No Vacation: Other professions give their employee time to go on vacation. It affords time to forget about work and just go about their personal affairs while taking time to relax and rest from the stress and rigors of their jobs.
A teacher does not know this benefit, because it is simply not afforded to them. Even during break, they have to prepare ahead for the start of school, with their lesson notes and plans.
The long break is a period where they have to prepare their notes and slides for the next session or the beginning of the next academic period after the break. So without a vacation, the teaching profession ends up with the lack of patronage that other professions get.
Lack of resources: There are limited resources available for teachers in the teaching profession, unlike in other professions where the resources are plenty and possibly endless.
In most cases, most teachers have to source materials or resources themselves with little or no assistance from the administration. The library may lack the necessary books, the laboratory may lack the necessary equipment, and so on. But the fact remains that students ought to learn, so it now falls on the teacher to source these materials themselves.
Irrespective of the fact that they may have successfully sourced these materials, they are not compensated by the administration, as they are quickly reminded that it is their job in the first place.
Age-long administrative processes hinder the learning process: The learning process has been hindered by archaic administrative procedures that make it difficult for teachers to effectively work.
Virtually every profession experiences changes that reflect the recent times and practices of what is expected from the profession. They undergo these changes periodically and from time to time.
But for the teaching profession, the same principles are practiced over the years, making it difficult to proper teacher the students well. Some schools still use chalkboards to teach, and some schools draw computer appliances on the board without having any physical parts. This type of negligence is what would end up greatly affecting the profession negatively.
No pay during breaks: When you go on breaks as a teacher, it is automatically assumed that you are not working and as such, you are not entitled to earn salaries or wages.
This is irrespective of the fact that you have to work during breaks to ensure that the next academic session goes well for you and the student, and by extension, for the school.
The payment only runs during your school time or academic session, but outside that, your salary ends. That discourages a lot of people from pursuing a career path in the teaching profession.
Less budget allocation: As we had earlier stated, teachers enjoy little to no love from the government or people in the administration. This can be seen through the amount of budget allocation given to them
When government allocates a budget, a bulk of it goes to financing the military, war, and other areas that they feel have more relevance than the profession, whereas education gets one of the lowest allocations.
This would discourage anyone from pursuing a career here because with such low budget allocation, comes the fact that you would end up with close to nothing as salary or wages, or less funding for education-related projects or programs.
Different learning styles: This is more personal to the teacher and the student. There is a tendency that students to have various individual learning methods. While some can learn on the spot, others have to go home and read to understand, while others have to be repeatedly taught before they understand.
This can be stressful on the part of the teacher, as you have to embrace these differences and see how you can relate to each student individually to ensure that they can function better with the rest of the class. If you lack such patience, it could become difficult for you to effectively do your work.
Cumbersome workload: Teaching has about the highest workload of any other profession out there. You have to constantly ensure that you are up to date with available knowledge for each course or topic that you teach. You have to constantly research and make notes, and go through various materials and resources to get accurate information to pass on to the students. While others may see it as no big work, moving close enough you would see how much work this is on the side of the teacher.
Being a teacher has its advantages and disadvantages, and as such, we are glad that you took the time to go through the article. The aim of this article has been achieved and I am sure that you will have the best tool to check the benefits of being a teacher or if you do not want to be a teacher. a