Before I even decided to take up the Professional Teachers Course in UPOU, I had several experiences being a teacher.
I used to teach in our church as a Sunday School and VCS (Vacation Church School) teacher for 9 years. My duties were not difficult yet not too easy. I would teach the kids some church songs and rhymes, I used to play with them and make some ice breakers, and I would tell stories from the bible, making sure that they get the moral of the stories.
I used to teach Korean and Chinese kids at a summer camp in Clark Pampanga. I had one-on-one tutorial classes and some group classes. Basically, I make sure they learn to speak in English.
I was an online teacher for 4 years. Through the use of technology, I used to teach English to Asians of any ages by using Skype or other private video chat applications.
These were just some of my experiences as a teacher before. I was a teacher and I enjoyed my job. I enjoyed the title used by my students to call me. But then, was I a professional?
What does it really takes to be a professional teacher?
If I was already called a teacher by my students, why am I still aiming to study PTC now and get my license?
Because… I was just not enough. My credentials are not enough. My learning was not enough. I have to be enlightened. I have to be aware of the real duties. I have to be equipped.
Teacher professionalism, in the Philippines, requires a proper degree and a board exam. I may have a few experiences, but I do not have a license. Therefore, I am aiming to be a professional teacher.
Professionalism. Big word… Are teachers being regarded as professionals?
According to the Dynamics of Teachers Professionalism in an Asian Context by Terrence Edward QUONG, Expectations of professionalism are important in regards to what is perceived to be the roles, responsibilities, accepted practices and roles of teachers.
There are several perspective when it comes to professionalism.
The main thing that I have realized after studying this module is that being professional teacher means being able to understand and absorb that teaching involves many big responsibilities. It does not only end when we teach the students the lessons. Like the saying goes, “great power comes with great responsibility”. In teaching, we have social responsibilities too. We consider the people around us, the parents of our students, the government and the society. All these factors affect teaching and learning. And when we come to comprehend our responsibilities and fulfill them happily, that is the start of us being professionals.