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Teachers are the guiding lights

Teachers are the guiding lights

Teaching is considered to be a noble profession across the world. India has a long-standing tradition of Teacher-Student relationship where teacher is revered more than God or parents. Teachers’ day is celebrated in India, every year on the 5th of September to commemorate the birth anniversary of our second president Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan (1962-67). Dr S. Radhakrishnan was a renowned academician and a student-friendly teacher who enjoyed immense popularity amongst his proteges.

Internationally, World Teachers’ Day is celebrated every year on 5th October to commemorate the anniversary of the adoption of the 1966 ILO/UNESCO Recommendation concerning the Status of Teachers. UNESCO declared October 5 as a “Teachers’ Day” in the year 1994 to celebrate teachers and the teaching professionals.

Teachers are the architects of society. They are the nation builders. The impact they have on their students cannot be measured in any terms. Starting from the kindergarten, up till the university level and sometimes even beyond, teachers leave deep impressions upon their pupil’s personalities and lives. The significance of a good teacher can never be undermined. A teacher-student relationship is the most selfless of all relations in which the teacher expects nothing in return.

Teachers selflessly share their knowledge and experiences with their students and count their students’ successes as their own, take pride in their accomplishments and always encourage them to be better versions of themselves.

Teachers’ day is to acknowledge and celebrate teachers for their contribution towards educating and empowering the society. But these celebrations have changed over the years. During the 80s and 90s when students used to pluck flowers to make a bouquet for their class teacher and then shyly wait in a queue to hand it over to the worthy recipient of their veneration. During mid-level school, flowers gave way to greeting cards on which students used to pen their heartfelt gratitude towards their subject teachers, confidently place it on their tables and wait for their response. Their responses would usually be encouraging, besides the occasional snubs, upon the grammatical mistakes.

During college the celebration gets different; each student would have their favorite professors. Some would be strict, others would be friendly, but all will be highly knowledgeable and open to discussions. We learnt by listening to their lectures, observing them, emulating them. We would approach them with all our subject related or personal queries and learnt some of the biggest and best life lessons from them.

Nowadays, teachers’ day greetings are exchanged over emails, WhatsApp messages or Facebook posts. Technology has overtaken the personal touch in every relationship and teacher-student relation is not an exception. Sources of information have also changed. Earlier, we would turn to books and well-read teachers. We had no one except our teachers to clarify our doubts and provide us leads for research, which they would do willfully. Now online tutorials and video lectures are the preferred choices for students. Earlier, we would spend copious hours in the library reading and researching, now google provides all the information in seconds whichever we need. But, the credibility of information accessed over the internet cannot be vouched for. Ultimately one has to turn to a teacher for verification and validation.  Thus, one can safely say that teachers are, will be, and have always been, irreplaceable.

On teacher’s day, students express their gratitude to all the teachers whose indelible impressions are forever etched on their memory. Being knowledgeable and thorough in one’s subject is an absolute must; but equally important is to be a good human being, one whom students can approach, relate to, learn from and strive to emulate.

Thank you, teachers, for being the beacons and guiding lights towards a wholesome life.