Over the past two weeks, I found myself unexpectedly on leave due to a leg injury. As an Assistant Professor, it's not easy being away, especially considering the weight of responsibilities even one missed day can bring. Surprisingly, my time away was anything but a break - in fact, it made me appreciate the strong bond between students and teachers.
Despite being on leave, my inbox and phone never rested. Students from different sections reached out, not only inquiring about their marks but also seeking assistance on various subjects. Some even requested additional classes, showing an eagerness to learn beyond the scheduled curriculum. What struck me the most was the diverse range of questions – from creating Google folders for collaborative work to simplifying legal jargon about injunctions.
What this experience highlighted is the importance of being an approachable and understanding educator. It's clear that students thrive in an environment where they feel comfortable reaching out for help. In a world where learning extends beyond the classroom, teachers should be allies, not just sources of information.
These incidents affirm my belief that the future of education lies in fostering meaningful connections between educators and students. It's not about being unquestionable authorities but rather being mentors who encourage curiosity and provide support when needed. The dynamics of teaching and learning must evolve, and it's heartening to see glimpses of this positive change in action.