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What Do Teachers Make? What Do Teachers Make?
What do you make?
Dec 31st, 2005

The dinner guests were sitting around the table discussing life. One man, a CEO, decided to explain the problem with education.

He argued: "What's a kid going to learn from someone who decided his best option in life was to become a teacher?"

He reminded the other dinner guests that it's true what they say about teachers: "Those who Those who can't...teach."

To corroborate, he said to another guest: "You're a teacher, Susan," he said. "Be honest. What do you make?"

Susan, who had a reputation of honesty and frankness, replied, "You want to know what I make?"

"I make kids work harder than they ever thought they could."

I make kids believe in themselves when no one else will.

"I make a C+ feel like a Congressional Medal of Honor and an A- feel like a slap in the face if the student did not do his or her very best."

"I make parents tremble in fear when I call home"

"You want to know what I make?

"I make kids wonder."

"I make them question."

"I make them criticize."

"I make them apologize and mean it."

"I make them write."

"I make them read, read, read."

"I make them spell definitely beautiful, definitely beautiful, and definitely beautiful over and over and over again, until they will never misspell either one of those words again."

"I make them show all their work in math and hide it all on their final drafts in English."

"I make them understand that if you have a dream, then follow it...and if someone ever tries to judge you by what you make or what you do, you pay them no attention."

"You want to know what I make?! " "I make a difference." "What about you?"

Taylor Mali: What Teachers Make?
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  #1 (permalink)  
Happy Camper on Jan 2nd, 2006, 02:55 am
Default Re: What Do Teachers Make?

This brought a tear to my eye!
  #2 (permalink)  
Globe Runner on Jan 2nd, 2006, 10:50 am
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Very True
  #3 (permalink)  
mesmark on Jan 3rd, 2006, 06:22 am
Default Re: What Do Teachers Make?


Build futures!
  #4 (permalink)  
mrcards on Mar 21st, 2006, 08:41 am
Default Re: What Do Teachers Make?

That was great! Didn't bring a tear to my ear, but really, it was wonderful to read. I don't like when people judge others by what they do or by how much money that they make from their jobs. In honesty, all jobs are important. There may be a day when you think down upon the garbageman, or the person that sells you coffee, or the guys that make nails, but really every one of those people are important, and so are their jobs. The article was very nice because it dealt with teachers and we can all relate, but we must also allow time to reflect on everyone else out there. Put all of us screwballs together and that's what makes our great society!
  #5 (permalink)  
susan53 on Feb 26th, 2007, 11:41 am
Default Re: What Do Teachers Make?

Perhaps what it really shows is that teachers ought to make a lot, lot more ....
  #6 (permalink)  
Eric18 on Sep 22nd, 2007, 02:54 pm
Default Re: What Do Teachers Make?

Excellent essay!

The arrogance of the greedy, the indiffence of the self-satisfied, and the ignorance of the ungrateful continually stuns me. What do you make? You help people give birth to their own personalities and provide the tools so they can become who they want to be. One quick measure of a society is how teachers are treated. The United States, on this criteria and many others today, remains a troubled society.
  #7 (permalink)  
cornerenglish on Sep 28th, 2007, 01:07 pm
Default Re: What Do Teachers Make?

Thanks for that!
I was quite in a trouble with explaining it to myself: what do I do as a teacher? I'm 25, have been in adult teaching so far and now started a new career with young esl learners - having behavioural and social problems. As I was reading, it suddenly made my new job worthy enough not to give it up before I even had a chance to make a difference.
  #8 (permalink)  
Ferre on Apr 9th, 2008, 08:14 am
Default Re: What Do Teachers Make?

I just have a word: Beautiful!!!!!
  #9 (permalink)  
llsksh77 on Sep 21st, 2008, 08:42 pm
Default Re: What Do Teachers Make?

Dude, that's a poem by Taylor Mali. You should cite him because it looks like you're taking credit for it.
Taylor Mali - Taylor Mali: What Teachers Make?
  #10 (permalink)  
English-coach on Mar 16th, 2009, 04:53 am
Smile Re: What Do Teachers Make?

Taylor Mali sure has a way with words. I think that sometimes we look at the wrong "figure or number" to evaluate our worth in this world. Most put a dollar sign on it; equating worth to the amount of money you have tucked under your mattress or adding to your account each month. Others look at physical possessions like cars, houses and gizmos.

How do you evaluate your worth?

For example...right now I am unemployed. Like so many people out there in this world right now, my presence in my field is not in demand (too many teachers...not enough seniority). ('dems the the words of my Dad.)

But do you think for one minute that I am moping around my house feeling sorry for myself and telling myself that I am not "making" a difference or contributing because I don't have a job.

Not for a minute. I am taking this time to give back, help others and in the process start my own business, slowly like a turtle. Sure, right now I am working 10 hours a day for 50 cents of online income (when I used to make much MUCH more per hour) but I'm helping others. I get emails from people telling me what a difference I am making. How much they appreciate what I am doing.

In the future...I will get back into the game and start making some money, but for now I'm quite find with "just" making a difference.

How are you making a difference? Look hard and you will realize that you are changing lives without even knowing it.

  #11 (permalink)  
Densweetpea on Oct 3rd, 2010, 08:59 pm
Default Re: What Do Teachers Make?

Wow thanks for posting that it really makes me happy when people realise how much of a difference teachers make. They play a very important role, Ive always had so much admiration for teachers who go the extra mile. Im a eacher now, its a challenge everyday to be more creative. Its a big responsiblity, we are here to shape minds, I just want to be better at what I do. My passion lies with fashion and art, its in many cases helped me in class. Teenagers love talking about fashion and music. Thanks again for posting the article.

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