Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Teacher and Student Relationship

There is a Chinese proverb saying that among three people who walk together, at least one is for sure to be my teacher 三人行,必有我師焉。"

This means that I can always learn something from almost anyone whom I encounter. A teacher-student relationship may not be established in this case. Such situation may be extended to attending a talk given by someone publicly, be it free or a fee applied. You are not obliged to recognize the teacher-student relationship. You may be attending the talk/gathering with the intention of merely obtaining some information or purely for socializing or entertainment.

When someone gives a course and you attend this course paying a fee with the intention of learning something, a teacher-student relationship is established. The relationship may be loose or firm depending on the follow-up after the course. If you find that it is not your cup of tea, and there is no intention to continue, the relationship is terminated right away. You can consider that you have not taken the course altogether if you honestly disagree with whatever is taught.

If you meet your first teacher of a subject and take the course whether online or in person and there is adequate communication after the course and you really learn to your satisfaction, then at least the teacher is your Enlightening Teacher. In English this term may not exist but in Chinese this is known as a Qi Meng Lao Shi 啓蒙老師。Even if you learn from other teachers later, this first teacher is of primary importance in Chinese culture.  To understand this term you can read about the hexagram Meng .

As teachers, we cannot expect to be liked, much less loved, by all our students. If I have 3000 students and about 70 of them have achievement and recognize the teacher-student relationship, I will be more than satisfied.


No comments: