Growing up, our parents entrusted our rearing and education to the nice, kind folks at the best school they could find. Sometimes, though, the teachers that they left us with were a little questionable around the edges. Nonetheless, our experiences with them helped shape us into the people we are today. Granted, we may be a little neurotic, but we mean well.
As in most things, there are certain types of teachers who were part of the universal educational experience:
8. The one that instilled the fear of God in you AKA the Trunchbull
Your academic experience wasn’t complete until you encountered a Trunchbull, also known as the scariest teacher you’ve ever encountered. Walking into the classroom felt like walking through the icy cold gates of hell, and you counted the seconds until the bell signalling the end of class would ring. They were demanding, mean, ridiculous and rigid in their beliefs, and accepted no excuses or shenanigans. You are a better and stronger human being for having looked into the face of evil and said “not today!”
7. The one that never taught you anything AKA the Gilderoy Lockhart
Also known as the Easy Pass Class, this teacher left a lot to be desired in terms of actual learning. Sure, you appreciated the free period as they sat behind their desk and napped, leaving you to watch videos or to your own devices, but some time around midyear you started to feel guilty about the money your parents were wasting on this chump. This at least taught you one thing: to steer clear from people who would chase down these easy to pass professors, because you felt it was a reflection of what kind of people they really were.
6. The one that you were afraid you’d grow up to be like AKA the Ms. Norbury
Ah, Ms. Norbury. She was all sorts of attractive, cool, quirky, and smart. You learned a lot from her classes, both academically and in terms of life the real world. By the end of the year you actually considered her either a friend or a mentor. The downside is that you saw too much of yourself in them, and while where they were in life wasn’t that bad, it still wasn’t what you wanted for yourself.
5. The one that tried to be your mom or dad AKA the Miss Honey
Well-meaning, mild-tempered, and in possession of the patience of a saint, the Ms. Honey types only came around once, and only if you were lucky. They were your go-to person on campus, the only reliable adult in your eyes whom you could count on for sympathy and advice. The only problem was when they acted like they knew you better than your own parents did and subsequently treated you accordingly, making you want to scream “HU U BA” at them.
4. The one that you couldn’t disappoint AKA the Dumbledore
This teacher was everything you wanted to grow up to be like, your #lifepeg. They were wise, morally unshakable, and kind to a fault. They treated you like their own son or daughter, and even though they never put it quite so bluntly, you were scared to death of letting them down academically and with your character. Sometimes it felt like they expected so much from you that it was as if they expected you to be a completely different person. Trying to live up to their view of you almost broke you on more than one occasion, but you came out of the experience a much better person, stronger in all the ways that matter. You still keep in touch with this person, especially when going through personal crisis and periods of difficulty.
3. The one that taught you more about life than about books AKA the Mr. Feeny
This kind of teacher was even more rare than the Ms. Honey type, and you considered yourself lucky if you at least had a friend in his class. The Mr. Feeny’s of the world were prized by all that came under their tutelage, and were more authority figures than they were teachers. You, your friends, and even your family came to them for advice or to simply sound off about problems, and they always handled your concerns and issues with grace and tact. With this kind of teacher around, your growth as a person took center stage rather than your growth academically (which, of course, he also managed to facilitate well).
2. The one that gave you weird feelings AKA the Ms. Cross
The Ms. Crosses of the world were the first to stir feelings in you that you hadn’t expected in a school year. Brilliant, beautiful, and, most importantly, unavailable. Forget the kids in the playground, this kind of teacher made you want a real man/woman. You hated the age difference, felt your love was pure, worshipped them for all that they were, and took every opportunity to prove to them that you were wise and mature beyond your years. Unfortunately, they always resisted, which was just as well. You cared about them enough that you didn’t want them to wind up in jail for you anyway.
1. The one that understood AKA the Mr. Keating
From the second you walked into your first class with this teacher, the way they looked at you felt like they had a finger on the very pulse of your soul. Over the course of classes, you came to realize that the person in front of you was an actual human being with real hopes, dreams, trials, and tragedies–just like you. They taught you to embrace beauty and art, and helped you find and come to terms with who you really were. This teacher was an experience you wished all people could have, because their impact on you was something you will carry inside of you forever, their lessons like a light in your heart that can never be drowned. Carpe diem!
Who were the teachers you experienced while you were growing up? Leave a comment and share your stories with us!