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By Guest Contributor: Mindy Thierolf
One day I found myself thinking about the laws of the universe, and I had to wonder…are there any LAWS of TEACHING? Well according to John M. Gregory’s book, The Seven Laws of Teaching, there are seven. Newton had three. Murphy just needed one, you know… “Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.” There are laws for everything. Brown’s Law of Physical Appearance says “If the clothes fit, they’re probably ugly.” Wilson’s Law of Commercial Marketing Strategy states, “As soon as you find a product that you really like, they will stop making it.” There’s the Law of the Bath…”When the body is fully immersed in water, the telephone will ring. There’s the Law of Result that says, “When you try to prove to someone your car won’t start, it will.” And don’t forget The Law of Biomechanics – “The severity of the itch is inversely proportional to the reach.”
But I think if we had to look at the universe and all of its laws of probability, I think that being a teacher, with all of its mind –blowing, mind glowing purposes of skilful inspirational truth, one would have to step back and admit that we are just an anomaly….we are a deviation from the norm. Yes, there are rules, but rules that are so outside of the norm, that the line is completely blurred as to where our job ends and where we begin. Think about it…we mold minds, heal wounds, transfer ideas.
We set the axis of our student’s brains at a perfectly tilted 23 degree imaginary line that extends from the North part to the south…. We “divide” the class period between inspiration and perspiration…we manage crises, Band-Aid cuts, multiply factors, dangle participles and heal broken hearts. We humor, we respond, we appeal, we are teachers. Our laws are not those of the universe. We possess powers that superman could only dream of…the power to humanize, inspire, provoke thought, and promote excellence…we reach, we teach, we sweat, we cry…we are teachers.
Our laws don’t stop at the door in the morning and end at the steps at night. We lie awake pondering over a student, wonder if their basic needs are being met on the weekends. We are teachers. According to the Washington Post, our jobs didn’t even come close to scoring in the top ten jobs in America, but it didn’t make the top worst either…I think “meter reader” and “lumberjack” held that spot. We are teachers. We make a difference. We know who we are at the end of the day, and in the middle of the night. We train, we teach, we laugh, we learn…we are teachers. Maybe John M. Gregory is right, there are “Seven Laws to teaching,” but when we’re busy researching “Best Practices,” and improving our “instructional methodologies,” we know at heart, what we do for a living is important…because at the end of the day we are teachers, and we make a difference.