Every teacher needs a healthy professional ethic

If basic professional ethics are not sufficiently developed or habitualized, that is a poor prerequisite if you want to be a good teacher. Read here what minimum standards you should meet at least.

A teacher explains the assignment to a student

It is a privilege to be able to accompany young people in their developmental phase from child to adult. Photo: © Monkey Business/stock.adobe.com

The professional passion should be the promotion of the students. This was to be felt by the students as well as by the parents and colleagues. Of course, in the teaching profession, you have many interests of your own (the best possible working conditions, a good schedule, etc).), but the passion for the students should be recognizably first and foremost. And promotion of the pupils is to be understood holistically. Technical support is an important aspect, but by no means the only one. Enabling maturity, growing with resistance, learning responsibility, becoming independent and practicing basic democratic rules are all important additional aspects of holistic support that is committed to the students as people.

The challenge of adolescence

It is a privilege to accompany young people in their developmental phase from child to adult. However, this places the highest demands on teachers. Pupils as adolescents – especially in the critical phase of puberty, in which the value system is first sustainably constituted – have to try themselves out in a variety of ways. From an adult’s point of view or from a rational point of view, one often has to deal with irrationalities, provocations, carelessness and resistant behavior, which affects the teachers as representatives of the institution school (it also affects the parents as representatives of the social institution family). Above it was already said that one should not take such things personally as a teacher. It is of no use and serves no one to complain about the decay of mores and values. As a rule, you don’t have to deal with radical evil either (even if, when the relationship level is poisoned, you, as a participant, like to tend to such interpretations). This knowledgeable basic attitude or. Viewpoint helps to demoralize problem situations and conflicts – which in no way means accepting everything or letting it happen, on the contrary!

Dignity in the school

In schools, there is a power imbalance between teachers and students, which is reinforced on the teacher’s side by numerous rights (authority to issue instructions) and sanctions (enforcement of compulsory school attendance, imposition of educational and disciplinary measures, giving grades, etc.).) is constituted. Nevertheless, and all the more reason, it’s important to always treat students with dignity and preserve their dignity, especially in tense situations. The threshold to (re-)act undignified as a teacher is low in school, and sometimes its subtle crossing is hardly noticed. Performance lags, refusals, provocations, slights (whether personally meant or not), stressful situations, job fatigue, mounting experiences of disappointment reduce inhibitions to react ironically, hurtfully, ambiguously or even cynically and thus often in a degrading manner. What really matters is that students set an example of the kind of behavior that one would hope would shape a society in all its parts and in the future.

Lack of readiness for further training

As a teacher, you are never finished, despite your primary education at college/university and your secondary education in the seminar. As in many other professions, success has much to do with lifelong learning. This is not only a matter of technical knowledge (what is the latest state of research in my subject?), but also a matter of a more general understanding of the subject?) and subject didactic topicality.

One should also be up to speed politically, sociologically, and in terms of the philosophical implications of one’s subjects. Teachers are also advisors in some matters and developmental companions, they are also important interlocutors for parents. At the same time, they are actors in school development (i.e., working within a complex system). The extensive content-related and methodological competencies for all these challenges of the profession have to be acquired to a large extent by oneself. The attendance of advanced trainings and the readiness to educate oneself incessantly through discussions and readings are basic conditions for successful teachers.

Overwork and overload

Overwork ("I am not up to the task, the demands of the teaching profession") or overload ("The number of demands is too much, there is not enough time at the back") also prevent you from being a good teacher in the long run. In both cases, thoroughly analyze the causes. What causes the overwhelm? Does the excessive demand arise in the core business (teaching)?? Is it an objective overload or the experience of not living up to one’s own standards? If you are confronted with excessive expectations from the outside (from parents, colleagues, school management)? Are there disciplinary problems that seem unsolvable? Are there incriminating conflicts?? Which measures (discussions, task reallocation, qualification) are conceivable?? The same is true in the case of overwork: is it acute, periodic or chronic? What caused it (by the teaching assignment, by assigned additional tasks, by own commitment, by problematic events in the private sphere)?

If it is not possible to identify the causes of excessive demands or overload and to find ways of remedying the situation, there is a risk of loss of motivation and manpower. It’s easy to fall short of your potential and not be the good teacher you could be and certainly once wanted to be.

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