Sometimes teachers help students discover purpose in life. Sometimes, however, teachers discover their own purpose.
In my first year as a teacher, I was sure I had learned all I needed to know about proper classroom procedure. All the students sat in rows at individual desks. Talking or other disruptions were not allowed while they were working. If students had questions, they were expected to ask me. After all, I was the expert and if I didn't know the answer, then it wasn't worth knowing. I thought I was doing my job very well. My students worked, remained quiet, turned in their assignments, and were generally productive. We moved smoothly from one unit to the next, and everyone was on the same text chapter in any subject. And yet, I missed all the classic signs of what was really going on in my classroom that first year.