昨天就一項校本教學計劃認識了幾位充滿熱誠和專業精神的老師，我們討論計劃內容，臨走時他們告訴我他們頗多學生都是來自基層家庭，領綜緩的也大有人在，SEN 學生更不在話下；他們的一個使命， 就是要幫助這些學生也能跟得上學業。
About 2 months ago on April 29, I attended Miss Winnie’s wedding at Chung Chi Chapel on CUHK campus. I had been Miss Winnie’s PGDE teacher, and was content to see her reach this milestone of her life.
Back in 2003, one day while I was thumbing through the timetables of the teachers on the PGDE programme, in preparation for the upcoming Teaching Practice visits, I saw that Miss Winnie was a teacher at Bishop Ford Memorial School, the school that I went to as a primary kid.
The next week, when I saw Miss Winnie in class, I said proudly to her, “Winnie, did you know that I went to Bishop Ford Memorial School as a student many years ago?”
Miss Winnie replied, even more proudly, “Paul, did you know that I also went to this school as a student some years ago?”
All these miraculous connections are made possible, because we are teachers.
Yesterday, I met up for lunch with a former education student, Jenny. Jenny was as exuberant as ever. When I asked her how she managed to keep up her passion for teaching after all these years, she replied, without a moment of thought, “As long as it is something that students will benefit from, I will totally pour myself into it.”
Jenny has taught for some years already, but she is even more zesty than a first-year teacher. She has inexhaustible energy for her work. She possesses a wide array of professional competencies, and has taken on a variety of curriculum leadership roles, but she will jump at the first opportunity to try something new. On top of serving her own school, she is now part of a Hong Kong University’s project providing school-based support for teachers teaching non-Chinese-speaking students.
When I probed further and asked her what gave her all that drive, she attributed it to her own character. I was not totally content with this answer, which is a purely innate quality. I wanted to look for some generalisable factors that can be applied in other work contexts and across people whatever their character. So I pushed Jenny to think harder. At last, Jenny came up with this example. If after going through some school-based planning with teachers, she sees that the teaching design works well in the classroom so that the students learn happily and effectively, this will give her a great sense of satisfaction.
This indirectly supports the current view of many writers on motivation who highlight 3 external factors that give people drive: autonomy (having the space to decide on how to go about one’s work); mastery (the possibility to get better and better at what one is doing); and purpose (being able to see the meaning of one’s work). For me, Jenny’s example is saying that if on top of these factors, you also have the right character – that will give you the lifelong passion.
I enjoy planning new workshops from scratch. This is a highly creative activity. At the same time, it enables me to make full use of my professional knowledge, and experience. The process of planning, however, is not always straightforward. It’s often messy, with hundreds of ideas floating in your mind, and dozens of practical considerations to make. But it gives me a great sense of satisfaction as gradually, the workshop design takes shape, and the ideas become more concrete. I hope that all teachers can share a similar satisfaction, and that’s why we must ensure they have sufficient time to do lesson planning.
要有美術修養以製作美麗的壁報，識唱歌跳舞演戲以便訓練學生演出variety show和參加各式比賽， 教英文又要對STEM 有一點認識，要懂得接力跑步以便在運動會娛樂學生，要有公關技巧以便和一眾家長週旋，要有旅行社領隊的技能以便帶學生往外地比賽或交流，要有救傷證書以便急救學生，要對TECHNOLOGY 有相當認識以便推展電子教學……。想到這裏，更加敬佩他們。今天還有一些人以為教小學很容易，他們是大錯特錯。