Teaching hurts

14th March 2003 at 00:00
Don Short, agony uncle, answers your questions.

I cannot stop myself from becoming emotional about teaching. Most of my students are young and I consider them as children. I can get very angry with my students, as I do with my children, and this has been criticised. A more objective approach has been suggested. How is this possible?

I would agree that teachers often become too emotionally attached to their work and this can sometimes lead to irrational and even irresponsible behaviour. But teaching is an emotional job. Dealing with students is not easy, and given the degree of discipline and control needed at times, it is not that different from being a parent. But they are not your children and you cannot afford to invest the same amount of emotional energy. It is too draining. Try to stay detached.

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