We all know those few teachers who belong to certain funny, bittersweet types. And almost in all schools! The phenomenon is universal. Some are quirky, some are the goody-goody ones, some can really land you in Inferno and some are the wise owls of our lives. This Teachers Day, let’s fondly remember some of our favourite teacher prototypes, we have all encountered at some point of time in our lives:
Mr/ Ms. Question Kumar/Kumari
They are the ones who always have a question for every solution and every problem that crops up in the classroom ( you know what I mean): there is a question to titillate the critical mind and one to make the prankster go weak in the knees, there is one to silence the over smart dude of the class and one to test how deep your knowledge runs. These teachers just love to put questions to students and that serves as both their assessment tool for rewarding as well as a mechanism for introspection, self defence and application of reformative measures where and when necessary.
They are uptight, tight lipped, naive and quite often the object of hidden gags for students. They are nervous, pretty clumsy at imposing discipline and very often end up shouting just to create further chaos in the class rather than dissipating it. Students rarely take them seriously as they are pretty oblivious to the many tricks and naughtinesses that kids are capable of. Perhaps the easiest to mimic behind their backs. We have all had them at least once in our lifetimes. But they really do take their professions seriously and we hope that one Mr. Kumar of class 8 who talked to the board while teaching has learnt to face the class( quite literally) by now.
Mr/ Miss Goblet of Fire
They are always angry and always the ones perhaps whose reports land you in the Principal’s office or earn you the heaviest scoldings from your parents. Frankly, classes are quite a terror with them for the weak at heart. But there is sometimes a young daredevil in class who is always at loggerheads with them. Every class with them is transformed into quite a battlefield when you don’t remember the capital of Canada or forget the dreaded Pythagoras theorem. It’s a tough job to know what pleases them truly but in the process of pacifying their fastidious souls, we often happen to pay a visit to perfection, every now and then.
Mr/Miss Heart Candy
We all love to look at them and attendance in their class is always maximum. We all mainly attend their classes as smitten kittens. Almost every boy/ girl crushes over them. The number of questions asked after class sees a sharp increase and the next subject teacher waiting outside for a minimum of five extra minutes. We all go woozy and weak in the knees when they happen to smile at us exclusively or give us that special compliment. We really do envy their boyfriends/ girlfriend now when we stalk them on social media! Or we must have turned green many decades ago when we watched her being whizzed away by her beau after school, and that thought still makes your heart ache.
Sir/ Ma’am Arthouse
As abstract, intellectual and incomprehensible to the lay person, they are like arthouse films, with vast depths of knowledge that quite often prove to be abysses for the ordinary student to drown in. They dole out lots and lots of details and there are always those five students in class who love them and share a special rapport and always those who roll eyes and the others who stay mostly blank in their class. It is just as difficult to understand them as are postmodernist plays. But all humour aside, we know these mentors really deserve far better than they get. Students who shall be truly able to appreciate them are the ones who put their peers to shame with their sensitivity, comprehension and knowledge.
The quirky P.T teacher
Stander tease? Stand a tease? Stun der teese? We got to know a lot late, probably after school that they were asking us to stand at ease. They might be the funniest we come across, the most friendly, the tough and hardy kind, or even the greatest motivators, the P.T teacher is the most distinct experience of Indian schools. The mustachioed Sir flaunting a shahi maharaja style mooch or the Bob and pixie- headed Ma’am who serves the boldest inspiration in schools for girls sick of their long messy plaits. Often we have had them checking our E. V. S paper when the temporary teacher went on leave. We hope our schools learn to treat them better and give them the much needed dignity they are deprived of.
The Mr./Ms. “Should I call your Parents?”
These teachers are the ones dreaded by most owing to their constant caveat of reporting to parents over every issue- the most trivial to the significant. Students are in constant fear of getting a “parent’s call” over every violation they commit because it appears, the teacher just loves every opportunity of a rendezvous with the guardians who are anyways full of complaints about how delinquent their children are about homework and discipline. But by the time half the session is over you realise that the clouds that thunder seldom rain. Nonetheless, the trick these type of teachers employ does work most of the time, but there are also those really astute ones who see through these empty censures many a times.
The Life Changer
Most often they are the literature guides. That one Mr. Keating who taught us the meaning of life and stabilized our turbulent childhoods with their beautiful snippets of philosophy. They introduced us to all the finer things of life, poetry, art, music or movies. They cared for us and proved more effective than the school counsellor even in our toughest times. We all have that one teacher closest to our hearts whom it takes several lifetimes to forget.
This teacher’s THIS and that teacher’s THAT;; let us celebrate all our teachers with all their quirks and eccentricities, flaws and goodnesses just as they accept us with all our springs and winters and nurture us through our highs and lows and build us into capable and responsible beings