Teachers – Changing lives one at a time

By Hana Mazhar

They are punctual and agile, never speaking of their tiredness and not teaching us in haste. These are our beloved teachers; our mentors.

A teacher is someone who you can trust with all the information they give out, either about their experiences or about the theories they read out. A lecturer’s role is as important as that of a mother, they nurture us into becoming pioneers.

Our university shares a great number of brilliant lecturers who not only help the students with knowledge but try to connect with them through frequent exchange of words and sympathy.

A lecturer is not just someone who shares his or her wisdom and knowledge but also someone who listens to their students’ hardship and guides them to overcome their problems.

Lecturers are like super heroes, they wake up early with the duty to take care of their families; making lunch boxes for their children and breakfast for their spouses and then immediately heading out to perform a role of a mentor, to spread knowledge to their students.

From the moment lecturers enter the university, they do not have to just encounter three to four children but thousands of children, who are not even their own, but they remain patient with each of them.

Every adult has been raised in a different way and our lecturers have to deal with each student’s attitude and personality at once. Lecturers are not given enough credit for this, they are bound to be seen as people who work a certain way because this is their job and they get paid for it.

If they really want to just work, they would disregard their student’s feelings and never try to understand their problems or engage with them in conversations.

Why would they even share their experiences with us? They could just come to classrooms, teach us what the textbooks have to offer and leave, it’s that simple!

No small talk, no jokes, no empathy and no disclosure of problems. Why do they want to build a connection with their students? Of course, such lecturers exist, but then there are also those who take their time to thoroughly explain courses to us, making sure to engrave theories in our brains, share their experiences and re-explain when requested to do so.

These lecturers are to be cherished.  You must remember that these are lecturers who are working hard to give you a better future and not just working for themselves.

But we forget that they are in fact doing more than just work. Educating students is a very big responsibility, because if students fail in a class, the lecturers have most certainly failed to transfer their knowledge into them.

One student’s failure can be concluded as his or her failure. But ten students’ failure is concluded as the lecturer’s failure!

Most lecturers make sure what they teach us is being absorbed by our brains with complete understanding, or if not at least 90% should be understood by us and the rest can be revised later by ourselves.

Lecturers sometimes don’t realise what a great impact they have on our lives. They change us through their words, through their knowledge and through their unlimited shared stories on their experiences.
When lecturers share their stories with their students, we, as students feel a sort of bond with them, that they trust us enough to share their experiences with us, making us believe that they want us to learn from their experiences.

A joke or two doesn’t hurt one bit. In fact, it makes the learning experience more fun and it takes stress away from our minds after a long monotonous day. From them talking about their difficult bosses to their mind-boggling interview questions, all these conversations are stored in our brains, like a seed planted in our brain. Such stories make us catch a glimpse of what is waiting outside for us, outside our university.

Their constant questions like “Am I clear to you?” “Do you understand what I am saying?” or
“Do you have any question to ask?” at the end of every lecture is a form of invitation from them to build connection with their students.

They want students to enquire in depth or ask about topics which are not clear to them, to seek their help. This in my opinion is a great way to interact with students, to convince them to not feel shy to ask any questions.

Lecturers who take time to interact with their students and talk to them on a regular basis, trying to connect with them automatically build a parental relationship with them. Because as we live so far away from homes, there always remains an absence of an elderly guide which used to be present with us at all times at home.

The only well experienced and stern elders we have around us are our lecturers. There are no friends that we can look up to because they are just as messed up as us. So, we start looking up to our lecturers. We look up to them in hopes of them guiding us, for them to be our mentors and we expect to learn plenty from them.

If you think about it, you spend an enormous amount of time with your lecturers, some good hours every week. Within these four years, you spend almost every day with your lecturers in classrooms. So, there develops a need to feel connected to them, to be able to understand them better.

Lack of concentration occurs when you don’t like your lecturers, this is your inadequacy to understand them, and to build a connection with them. Hence, the lecturers become least bothered about you. For instance, when lecturers don’t care to include you in conversations, or make eye contact with you during lectures.

I feel, one-on-one interaction with students in a classroom makes students believe that the lecturers notice them and they start feeling wanted in that classroom. Students’ self-esteem increases and they feel good about themselves. Hence, they don’t want to miss classes and work hard on their studies.

You can concentrate more when you feel a bond with your lecturers, especially at this stage when you are far away from home and it’s a dire need to make connections with people around you.

A lecturer’s kind and motivating words, gestures and remarks can go a long way. Compliments and words of appreciation are things students strive for, especially those who work hard to get their work recognised.

We always remember when we are complimented by our lecturers and I think they don’t realise what a great impact their words have on us.

So, lecturers if you are reading this, on behalf of all your students I would like to say, your hard work doesn’t go unnoticed. We appreciate all your efforts and we respect and love you! ***

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