The student-teacher relationship has long been an interesting one and which is percieved differently among world cultures. Some are taught to fear their teachers, adulate them like gods, bow down in ultimate obedience. You get the drift. And in others it's quite the opposite, where the establishing of an equal relationship is encouraged. To share ideas and learn from each other.
But what possibly doesn't change is that all teachers have lives outside school, just like their students. which often isn't given much thought. Every morning, when we walk into class, there's the professor, waiting to begin another class, surrounded by all the symbols that give them that status - pens, notes, slides. Ever thought what they ate for breakfast? Who's their best friend? Where did they go on their last holiday? The characteristics that make them people, not just teachers.
Recently, I've been discovering the backgrounds of my professors based on what they share in class and their work which is available online. So many of them have fascinating existences beyond the premises of 640 Commonwealth Avenue.
As mentioned in some of my previous posts, one has Parkinson's and fights the disease everyday with a beautiful, undying sprit. Another had a rough childhood, rougher marriage and emerged from both, stronger and sparkling. And some share lifetimes with the same person, cherishing their spouse whom they're glad to have by their side as their teenaged children head off to college. I feel like Matilda in Roald Dahl's book by the same name, who learns of Ms. Jenny's life outside school.
The next time you're in class, let your mind wander just this once. Try seeing your teacher as a person rather than a professor, for just a couple of moments. You may gain an education rather than a lesson.