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FROM THE INTRODUCTION
The average high school student in the United States will have at least 28 different teachers before graduating—add coaches, counselors, and administrators to the mix and the number is probably closer to 40 or 50—and the average student will spend more than 20,000 hours directly under the influence of these professional educators. In other words: the ability and power that teachers have to intrigue, inspire, and influence young minds are quite real.
But what does a teacher look like?
It’s simple: we’re products of the same education systems where we now teach, but we’re hardly automatons. In fact, teachers today make up one of the most diverse workplace groups in the professional world. Yes, we’re products of the same systems, but we’re also professionals with varied backgrounds and long memories of our own childhoods seared into our souls. In large part, we are teachers precisely because we remember what it was like to be a student. Someone inspired us. Someone influenced us. Or someone hurt us. And we’ve channeled that joy (or pain) into our own unique philosophies on life and learning and we’re always looking for an opportunity to share them—with each other, our students, parents, or in our communities.
You Look Like A Teacher is a glaring reality check—it is the honest thoughts and ideas of professional educators who seek nothing more than to reify the modern classroom experience for a public that wants nothing less than the best in education for its children. The task of teaching has never been more complex and the expectations that burden teachers are carried out in antiquated systems that offer little support—and yet, teachers are finding success every day.
In this first volume of You Look Like A Teacher we share the stories that brought us into the classroom. In future volumes we will share stories that range from heartbreaking to hilarious, but they all share one common thread—that today’s teachers, against overwhelming odds, are standing strong in the trenches and making a difference one student at a time.