Saturday, October 13, 2007

Career, anyone?----Sunday Scribblings

Sunday Scribblings wants us to recall about our first jobs, worst jobs, dream jobs..


Soon after I completed my studies, I have been into teaching. I finished my post graduation in chemistry and got a teaching degree, which resulted in a teaching post.

My first job was in a school nearby which mainly consisted of students from Iran. Way back in 1990, just before the onset of gulf war, many Iranians had arrived in Delhi and were trying to assimilate into the Indian set up. That particular school had majority of Iranian students as compared to Indians. I do not recall having any problem with that other than the fact that those 15-year-olds were much taller than me and tried to flirt with me. In a way, it was a good experience for me. Trying to teach Chemistry and Mathematics to students who were not much interested in studying.

After a few months of teaching in that school, I got posted into a school run by the Government. That was a huge shock. In such a setup, students come from the so-called lower strata and are mostly first-generation learners. Infrastructure is nothing much to speak of. The classrooms are falling apart, no electricity, no water and sometimes, there are very few toilets. There is a dearth of blackboards too, what to talk of chalks. I have been teaching in government schools for 16 years now but the scenario has not changed much. These factors are huge challenges for any teacher and of course students too. The negative factors do not discourage the students. They are very enthusiastic to learn. That is one major incentive. For all our efforts we get their love and affection unreservedly. I would call that reward enough. I like to interact with my girls, helping them as much as I can. A few belong to such families where they are abused by their own fathers. We deal with that too...

I do like what I am doing. Teaching under-privileged girls is satisfying enough if we are able to make even a little difference in their lives. It is always a pleasure to meet any of them who after leaving school, do well in life. However, I sometimes wish to be a librarian of all things! That’s because I love reading, I love the smell of books. Once I considered that but my love for teaching out weighed that!

Back to square one!

Check out more on jobs here!!


39 comments:

Whitesnake said...

Well that'll teach ya! ;-)

homo escapeons said...

It must be so rewarding to teach children who WANT to learn and appreciate your efforts.

The Iranian connection is very interesting. I imagine that those days are long gone. I would have flirted with you too.

Once again I am still in awe of your brain.. how is it possible to comprehend Chemistry and Mathematics and create Poetry and Prose with such finesse?
You are the proverbial Renaissance Woman...I would love to see some video of you in Class..I bet that you're strict?
Have you ever taken any footage?

Sunday Scribblings said...

Great post! I was watching a program tonight (PBS's "Now") on the topic of child marriage -- they featured Niger, Guatemala, and India, and showed what these countries are trying to do to stop the practice, and in the process, they showed a school in Jodphur that brings village girls into the city for their education. It was a wonderful show -- so many people doing such good work!
-Laini

~Kathryn~ said...

my daughter teaches - and i hear from her the rewards and frustrations - but i am sure you are the type of teacher that leaves these children with a lasting impression !!

floots said...

thanks gautami
takes me back to the classroom
my jobs range from shovelling shit (literally - bagging manure on a farm) to teaching
and
on the very rare occasions i work nowadays it is in a library
perhaps we are not so far apart :)

giggles said...

I can see you would be a wonderful teacher!They were lucky to have you as part of their life! Very interesting post! Thanks for sharing!

Peace Giggles

paisley said...

i loved the post but this line still has me laughing....

"It is always a pleasure to meet any of them who has passed out..."

in the u.s. passed out means fainted,, or to fall asleep because you drank to much liquor!!!!!!

Bob-kat said...

That sounds like very rewarding work even if there are sides to it which are less pleasant, like dealing with abuse. It must be a pleasure to teach those who want to learn though.

Michele sent me to say keep up the good work!

gautami tripathy said...

steve: Teach me what?
:D

h.e.: Welcome back. You were kind of missed.

I too found the Iranians very interesting. I learnt a few things about their country too.

No, I am not strict in the conventional sense. A video footage of me in class? When there is hardly any electricity? What I wouldn't give to have that..:D

laini: A lot is being done about child marriages but Rajasthan is still worst affected by it.

Kathryn: Your daughteris right but teaching IS rewarding too.

floots: I can't believe it! And we poets are always similar!

giggles: Thanks. I don'tknow about that but I do love my girls!

paisley: I remember what it means in US. I anyway changed it now!

Bob-kat: Dealing with abuse is so very hard. It takes a toll!

Kamsin said...

I totally understand the rewards of teaching. Most of my students don't really want to learn but the one's who do and who actually learn something and discover their own potential are a reward enough! Great post!

the Brave said...

Teachers are so much more than teachers, aren't they - there is the social aspect to contend with and deal with as well - school is often a home away from home, and for some, regardless of the state of it, it is a sanctuary. I enjoyed reading this.

Herb Urban said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Herb Urban said...

My sister-in-law teaches in an underprivileged area. It is interesting to read how you both voice similar concerns about the lack of adequate funding, children from troubled homes, etc. I admire the dedication it takes to be a caring teacher. It is a definite labor of love.

P.S. Sorry for deleting my previous comment. I hit publish before proof reading out the typos. You can mark my paper down for that.

tricia stirling said...

I knew your post would be an interesting one! your students are very fortunate. a good teacher is a real gem.

Jo said...

glad you're doing what you love!

Gilson said...

I'm sure many of those girls look up to you. It's a spiritually rewarding job.

Robin said...

I don't think there is any profession more rewarding than one where you can truly make a difference in someone's life.

Reflekshins said...

it's always refreshing to see good people involved in careers that reach out to the masses

:)

Just Jen said...

I believe you have a wonderful job! You must be a determined woman to work in such poor conditions and yet you seem so high spirited! I do believe teaching is an awesome job!

Gillian @ Indigo Blue said...

Thank goodness for teachers like you. You will be remembered as having made a difference, it is nice to take that role seriously.
You chose the right profession.
xo
Blue

Betty C. said...

I figured a few other teachers would wax eloquently about their jobs!

I was tempted by being a librarian as a child, but I don't think it corresponds to the criteria that make me love teaching so much.

I love your blog's new design, by the way!

Jennifer Hicks said...

It is very fulfilling to be appreciated for your talents. I agree that this makes up for any lack in working conditions.

Teaching is arguably one of the most important professions. I have great respect for you and your skills!

Stacy said...

Sounds like plenty of reward for all of the struggle.

I enjoyed your post.

Pen and the Sword said...

You are so lucky to have such a rewarding profession. Teaching has been my dream job since I was a teenager.

A Librarian! My 15-year-old sister wants to be a librarian! That sounds like a neat job... sit and read, put away books, answer questions, and read some more! That does sound dreamy :o)

Jessica said...

I'm full of admiration for what you do, it's one of the truly important jobs out there. Great post- I loved it; I then found so much more to read on your blogs- another multi-blogger :)

I was drawn in by your coffee cups image- and I've got through two mochas whilst reading your blog. That's a sign that I'm enjoying myself.

Oh- and I drawn in to by the fact that you live in Delhi. I lived there as a little girl (Calcutta and Bombay too) and it's home to some of my strongest memories. I long to go back, and will one day, although I'm sure it's changed.

Here from Sunday Scribblings. Thanks for visiting mine too :)

January said...

It must be rewarding and frustrating to teach students but I'm glad you've chosen this as your work. The world needs more dedicated teachers like you.

Thanks for sharing your experience.

Jane Poe (aka Deborah) said...

Wonderful to learn more about you ... the children are fortunate to have you as their teacher. Peace, JP/deb

sarala said...

It sounds like you teach under challenging circumstances but as long as the kids want to learn, they will. I admire you for choosing this life's work.

Patois said...

How fortunate you are to be doing what you love. And to touch the minds of kids? Divine.

UL said...

Chemistry and Math, oh my! the former a tough nut to crack and the latter a fav. of mine, you must be brilliant in your field. I remember some of my teachers to this day, and stay in touch with a few them. Over the years- the teacher-student relationship has grown into something more mature... Teaching would be one of the most rewarding experiences, you chose well.

DJPare said...

Sounds like the girls and the school system are lucky to have you!

polona said...

i think your studens can be happy to have you as a teacher.
thank you

colleen said...

What a gift to give! It's more like a calling or vocation than a job. You can read more someday when you retire.

Mardougrrl said...

You sound like a great teacher under less-than-ideal circumstances. Your students (especially your girls, it sounds like) are lucky to have you.

Brian said...

I'm glad you enjoy the teaching and it gives you rewards. I could wish you the best, but perhaps more supplies would be useful.

ana said...

Its amazing you are doing what you love to do, and I can only imagine teaching to be a very rewarding job. specially teaching the underpriviledged students, they need it the most, the good teachers to shape their lives....and give them the hope to dream of a different and a better life...I wish you all the best in life.

And thank you for your wishes, my appointment went better than I had expected it.

Aprameya said...

Chanced upon your blog through another one. Great post. Few get this chance to make a difference to so many lives. I wish you great success in this noble profession of yours.

forgetfulone said...

I am a teacher in the US, and I can relate to your experiences with kids who don't want to learn or be in school. And it is true that the love and affection from students who appreciate what we do is our reward.

Crafty Green Poet said...

I loved teaching (Chemistry, Biology and Physics) in Malawi where all the students were motivated and attentive, i couldn't do it in the UK where teachers need to be disciplinarians (and administrators) more than they need to be teachers.