Star Teacher of the weekJennifer Coeritius
Afrikaans. Grades 8, 10, 11, and AS Level
When and why did you become a teacher?
From a very young age, I always dreamt of becoming a teacher. When I played at school with my peers, I always preferred being the teacher, a role I enjoyed very much. After grade 12, I enrolled at the University of Cape Town to become qualified as a teacher in order to make a difference and to have a positive impact on the lives of young people.
What is the best part about being a teacher?
The best part about being a teacher is being in a favourable position to influence learners positively. That is one of the many reasons why I, as an educator, under the leadership and tutelage of the late Ottilie Abrahams, established the Namibian Girl-Child Organisation, which later grew into the current Children's Movement. I've experienced immense personal fulfilment with the establishment of various school clubs and youth projects across the country. The commitment and perseverance always pay off.
What is the greatest lesson you've learnt from your learners thus far?
Seeing that so many of them studied under very difficult circumstances and had to face major challenges to be educated.
What do you think makes a good teacher?
Passion, effectiveness, patience, empathy, and dedication.
How did you cope as a teacher during the pandemic?
This was probably one of the most difficult challenges during my professional career as a teacher and head of department. I managed to overcome the major challenges with the guidance and support of the school principal, Lukas Hashiti, school management, fellow staff members, and the learners as well. The parents also played such a vital role.
What are some of the things that keep you motivated as a teacher?
Till today, when I meet some of my previous learners, whether it is in person or on social media, they are extremely thankful for what I've achieved with them within their school careers. The gratitude expressed by the parents is also one of the things that motivates me.