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Love thy students

Madhavi Hadker remembers a caring teacher during her school days. An HT Café reader narrates her story to us...

sex and relationships Updated: Mar 17, 2009 19:30 IST

After her schooling, Winifred decided to become a teacher. For her three-week internship, Winifred was assigned to teach 7th standard students. Senior teachers warned her saying,“Class 7 B is impossible to handle. The students have no manners.” Winifred was nervous.

Affection and more
She noticed that the class teacher was strict and even hit the students. Winifred believed that students need affection. The students were quick to note that their new teacher didn’t use a ruler and therefore relaxed. Once, she scolded the students for creating havoc in class, a little girl approached Winifred with the cane and said,“Teacher, you can hit us on our knuckles.” Her eyes brimmed with tears. Winifred said,“Never, not as long as I’m teaching you.” The entire class cheered for her.

Some boys in the school didn’t wear slippers as they couldn’t afford it. Once, while playing, Azim, the captain of the football team fell and hurt himself. Winifred asked Azim not to play because of his open wound.

Azim looked as if he was ready to burst into tears. Sensing his disappointment, Winifred rushed to the nearby chemist and brought him a bandage. Sticking it gently on the sole of his foot, she smiled and said, “Now, you can play as much as you can.” Azim’s happiness knew no bounds.

A token
Days passed, and Winifred’s internship ended one day. Her students wept as she left. They reminded her of the golden days the batch had spent together. Azim gave Winifred two roses and said, “Please accept this small gift. I hope our next teacher is just like you.”

Winifred understood the true meaning of teaching. She realised that it begins and ends with affection. She could never forget class 7 B.