Teaching is a lifelong process. Ask any teachers and they will vouch for it. As a teacher, you have committed yourself to being a lifelong learner. Teachers know this and have no hesitation attesting to it, yet it’s hard for some of us to admit our mistakes to our students. That exact moment of saying “Well, I was wrong guys about this, and you were right” could be one of the least favourable moments in our professional life. The reason for this is not hidden from us. Students trust teachers and we don’t want to let them down. What’s more, what happens to our credibility? Does that mistake indicate an irresponsibility to keep ourselves updated and in check?
Let me just clarify what I mean by mistakes are errors teachers shouldn’t make because we are supposed to know the correct and accurate information for the course we’re teaching. After all, not being prepared for the right answer or correct instruction is surely not what students expect from us!
I think, in this crucial moment, when your professional life is at stake and your ego feels threatened, choosing truth and honesty can be a significant achievement in all aspects of your life. In this blog post, I would like to share with you what happened in my last job interview. The job was my dream job and I was pretty determined to land it. So, here’s what happened!
On one beautiful day in October when everything seemed lovely and in place, I was invited for a job interview which I was so looking forward to. As you might expect, I made sure that I was prepared. I was confident enough in my teaching skills and the contribution I could make to the new work environment.
Everything was going smoothly until the hiring manager asked me a question that caught me off guard! The hiring manager asked me about my most recent accomplishment in teaching. For some seconds, I found myself totally lost and I couldn’t decide wisely how to respond, so like all those surprising moments in my life, I decided to follow my heart and trust my gut instinct. I told him that admitting my own mistake and owning up to it was my most recent professional achievement, which had happened a week before the interview. I can’t deny that the look on his face was saying “Now, is she the right fit? Someone who’s telling me her most recent accomplishment is a testimony to her failure!” However, he humbly and kindly asked me to clarify my point.
After hearing my story, he praised my honesty and bravery for not compromising the truth despite his potential reaction. He of course later asked me about my other accomplishments as a teacher for which he received what he was expecting from a teacher.
In retrospect, I can’t say if that was the best approach to responding to that question, but it was my best answer. I see teaching as a journey of lifelong learning. This story wasn’t just about me as a teacher but more as a person. I’m so grateful for having a job that provides me with this opportunity to practice honesty and integrity when needed.