By Brototi Roy:
“Have you ever really had a teacher? The one who saw you as a raw but precious thing, a jewel that, with wisdom, could be polished to a proud shine? If you are lucky enough to find your way to such teachers, you will always find your way back. Sometimes it’s only in your head. Sometimes it is right alongside their bed.”Â Â –Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom.
I had read this particular book last summer. It was a real life example of the beautiful relationship that exists, or at least used to exist between teachers and students.
I remember our early years at school. How the entire class would participate in planning out the perfect teachers’ day for our class teachers, how we would all contribute to buy balloons, chart papers, glitters, ribbons and all the other fancy stationary articles that our little minds thought were important for making the teachers feel special, how we would make posters and poems in their honour, how we would arrive an hour early on the day and diligently decorate the classroom and how our little hearts would soar with joy when the teachers would be pleased with our efforts.
And then I remember the last teacher day, which was just two months ago, and is still very fresh in my mind. I remember most of my classmates declaring it to be a holiday for them, since there would be no lectures. And even after trying to convince them for hours, just 6 of us turned up on the day.
And just six of us from my year, along with my juniors, who easily fit in a classroom with a few seats to spare, celebrated the day. I might not have learned a new chapter or two; I might have missed the new movie the others were planning to watch. But, what I experienced was far better.
These people devote an entire session for us. They work vehemently to make us the best. They are passionate people who devote their lives to education. Right from showing us how to hold a pencil properly, to teaching us how the world works, we are who we are because of our teachers. And if the students of India, the youth of the country cannot even put aside a single day for them, I do not know if the education was worth the trouble after all.
I agree that the teacher-student relation has reached new levels of professionalism, and it is wrong to expect things the way they were a couple of decades back. However, I simply refuse to believe that the kind of teacher Mitch Albom talks of in the above lines have vanished into the thin air.
If you take a stroll down the memory lane, you are bound you find the teacher who inspired you to be who you are, who was such an amazing person that you had a secret wish to become a teacher one day, and who you haven’t been in touch with for a very long time.
I just hope that each one of us keep aside at least a day each year to remember those people who shaped our lives, to appreciate the hard work that those teachers put forward for us to be who we are today, and to be grateful for being given the privilege to learn under such incredible human beings.