Well, I found another great blog.  I read about 25 blogs on a feed reader every day.   (I use Bloglines.)  This tells me if anything is new, so I don’t have to spend my time going back and forth to various blogs.

Eric MacKnight is my newest feed, and I want to share this with teachers everywhere.  I think you’ll like it.  I did.  Eric sounds like a great teacher.  I’m lifting this exactly how he wrote it, so I am giving him proper credit.


Teacher Magazine has a piece entitled ‘The Myth of the Great Teacher’ which quotes teachers’ responses to a New York Times article by a Bronx history teacher, Tom Moore. One of the comments, from ‘Gail, a high school English teacher in suburban Atlanta’, caught his eye:

I am frustrated with the mythology of the “great teacher” who sacrifices his or her entire life for the kids. I tell new teachers all the time: Your job is not your life. Your job is your job. Your life is the God of your understanding, your family, your friends, your pets, your hobbies, your passions. Healthy, well-adjusted teachers fit teaching into their lives, not life into their teaching. How do you think the kids of these “super-teachers” feel when their parent says, “I can’t do something with you because I’m doing something with my students?” I can’t respect that.

Great teachers are teachers who show up every day when they are well. And stay home and nurture themselves when they’re not well. Great teachers are those who do their best for their students every day by trying new things, keeping up with trends, teaching old materials in new ways, getting and giving feedback, and staying relentlessly positive. Great teachers let their kids be who they are but also push them to be better. Great teachers know their kids’ names and know them well enough to pick up the fact that something might be wrong in a kid’s life. And they act on that.

Great teachers are unbowed in the face of entrenched bureaucracy. Although they become weary, they do not give in to the cynicism that infects the mediocre teachers around them. They see the true sacredness of their job—making a difference in the life of a child. And that difference is different for every kid.

The only thing different, is that he said Gail sounds like a good teacher, but so does Eric.  Great quote. 

This is the stuff that inspires me to keep teaching.  Here’s an Oldie from Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young.  All education veterans will remember it. (Click on the link) 

Circa 1970.  I was entering 7th grade.  Huh.

Teach Your Children Well


You who are on the road
Must have a code that you can live by
And so become yourself
Because the past is just a good bye.

Teach your children well,
Their father’s hell did slowly go by,
And feed them on your dreams
The one they picked, the one you’ll know by.

Don’t you ever ask them why, if they told you, you would cry,
So just look at them and sigh and know they love you.

And you, of tender years,
Can’t know the fears that your elders grew by,
And so please help them with your youth,
They seek the truth before they can die.

Teach your parents well,
Their children’s hell will slowly go by,
And feed them on your dreams
The one they picked, the one you’ll know by.

Don’t you ever ask them why, if they told you, you would cry,
So just look at them and sigh and know they love you.

8 thoughts on “What is a great teacher??

  1. Yes we can be good teachers without sacrificing our family & friends! Thanks for reposting this, it is uplifting to see someone recognize our efforts and hard work! We can put in alot without giving up everything that we enjoy in our lives, this way we don’t burn out and resent our jobs or miss out on living and teaching through OUR experiences! I especially like the Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young song quote…an oldie, but goodie! 🙂

  2. ♥ all the teachers we have in thiz skool are nice…once u get 2 know them……♥but ms.bartolomei,ms.ryan,and last but not least ms.vermeulen r the only teachers that never give up on us and the only teachers that see uz everyday even though it looks that we dont appreciate what you guyz r doing for us….later on when we have a great job we will,and we will remember everything you guyz did for uz…..♥

  3. we have very good teachers here at Veritas School. especially the junior high teachers

    =======♥blessie (=

  4. i think a great teacher is a person who does their job in the right way adn they have fun doing it .a great teacher is the kind of person that makes the kids want to come back to school the person the kids look up to .thats why mrs.vermeulen,Mrs.ryan,Mrs.bartalomei ARE MY GREAT TEACHERS

  5. I thimk all teachers are great in there own special way even if they don`t really show it I never really had a problem with a teacher because they were a bad teaCHER:)

  6. WHATs a great teacher well hears a hint Be like MS.BARTOLIMEI AND MRS.RYAN ALSO MR,SHEN AND MR.cook AND MRS.VERMULEN!! DUH the their the coles teachers i duh

  7. I think you are a Great teacher Mrs. V you are really helping me through this year I’m going to miss you like you would not believe 😥 T.T

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