The Forces in Our Lives

Kylie Williams, Staff Writer

Teachers are often defined by what they know, how well they share their insight, and how they treat those learning from them. Most students would narrow it down to, how good or bad is teacher is depending on their grades. There’s also the state rating for teachers, which only bases their abilities on how well their students score on official exams. Although, I think there’s a lot more to teachers than how an individual student might perform in their class. So, I pondered, what do people believe defines a teacher?

I had the opportunity to talk to another student on their definition of teachers. I sat down with a fellow peer at Smithtown High School East to contemplate their answer to the question. “It depends,” she started, “there are good teachers and bad teachers.” I asked her what she believed it was that made teachers effective, to which she responded, “having better methods of conveying their ideas.”  She expressed that she never gave much thought to something like this, and while it was hard to figure out exactly how she wanted to respond, she came up with her best general statement. “Teachers are meant to be guiding forces in our lives. I believe they try their best.” 

Alternatively, I talked to Mrs. Frevele, a Spanish teacher here at Smithtown East, for her perspective as a teacher herself. After asking my all important question, she answered , “A teacher is a professional that helps students learn, and achieve their individual goals.” I even asked what being a teacher meant to her personally. She contemplated the matter, before eagerly stating, “Being a good teacher means helping my students succeed and realize their dreams.” She went on to say that a great relationship with good communication is important between herself and her students. She finalized it by expressing that she likes to be, “Compassionate and caring, ensuring I treat all my students with respect.” 

The opinions speak for themselves; to define a teacher, it’s important to recognize the values shared.  A good teacher can be many things, but what matters most is their long term impact left on their students.