My first day as a Teacher ~ Manaswini Sridhar

I completed my post graduation in English from the University of Hyderabad in 1978. I was an enthusiastic 21-year-old who knew that she would ultimately become a teacher because it fell in line with what what most people did in those days, and also because I hail from a family of teachers! I didn't have much time to think about what and how I was going to teach since three weeks after I graduated, a friend's wife told me that there was a temporary vacancy for an English teacher at Sri Aurobindo International School at Vidyanagar, Hyderabad, and would I be good enough to meet the Principal and help out. 
 
 
I was to teach the middle school students English and also have story telling sessions with the primary section. I asked my father how I should go about it, and he said, "You will know what to do. Just make sure it is fun and interactive and that you know your textbook." 
 
I went to school well dressed and there was a look of bewilderment as I was introduced as the English teacher to a class of around 15 children. That seemed an awful lot of young faces then, but now I understand what a small handful I had! They called me Didi and it was obvious they thought I was rather young!
 
I had come prepared with the grammar I needed to teach, and therefore plunged into it. The students were attentive and encouraging. There were butterflies in my stomach but I presented an air of confidence. My students told me that everything was clear. I thought I had done a great job and patted myself on the back. Being young, I did not realize that it was this 'giving' attitude of my students that helped me on that first day. I also know now that it is the attitude of my students that determines how well or how poorly my class turns out that day. I only wish that our students understood this!
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