“The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.” William Shakespeare, As You Like It.
I have always found this to be one of the most accurate comments that Shakespeare has ever produced. I find that as soon as one accepts their own intelligence or wisdom then they are doomed to a life of ignorance. I have always had a thirst for knowledge and care little about from where that knowledge can be gained or achieved. I find that knowledge is something that we all possess elements of but to achieve the intact ‘Grail’, as it were, is little more than a fallacy.
I spent yesterday filling rubbish bags with paperwork and novels that have occupied this earth longer than I have myself. I’ve found exams, which were sat the year I was born and meticulously gathered, and adapted folders of notes, which are completely obsolete. I couldn’t help but allow my mind to drift towards the philosophical as I discarded it all with minimal prejudice.
It really made me think: do we spend our lives accumulating a bank of resources that only reaches completion when it is being thrown in a recycling heap?
There’s a strong and unmistakable feeling of pride that one gains as a teacher. The feeling when you teach a student a new concept and watch them apply it. It’s truly wonderful and one of the greatest perks of the job. However, with training teachers, I experienced something even greater. The feeling when you teach a teacher a new concept and watch them apply it. You can then watch the students become more engaged in the lesson and learn more. It is a truly rewarding experience and one that I find incomparable.
The nineteen year old headmaster – with a second level qualification – leads me to our shelter from the morning sun. We sit in the shade of a pine tree, around a locally-produced wooden table and chairs. I am warmly greeted by the other members of staff, a man in his late-teens and an eighteen year old mother nursing her baby boy, as I take a sit at the rather delicately-placed table. The school – a cobbled concoction of mud, concrete and bricks – sits almost apologetically beside some eavesdropping cows and goats. This was my first experience of being a ‘teacher-trainer’ last week.