I'm so sick of the way some teachers talk. My latest frustration is when teachers defend themselves against outside attacks by saying... "and I work every weekend, and I have to buy my own supplies, and I blah blah blah... and I don't do it for the money, I do it because I love the kids.
Do doctor's love their patients? Do lawyers love their clients? Does my plumber just love clearing drains? Of course not. We do the jobs we do because over the course of our lives, we have found out what we do best. That's it. We teach because it is what we do best.
I don't accept the premise that I would be better at what I do if I cared more about the students. My level of effort, everyone's level of effort, is defined by their character. I work hard every day because that is what you are supposed to do. Whether I am washing my car or hanging a picture for a friend or educating America. I work hard because that is what you are supposed to do.
Ok, I'll admit that I go home knowing what I do is important and that makes it easy to put forth a great effort. I feel I have to work hard because I have a limited amount of time to do a very important thing; educate America. Maybe it would be tougher to go a hundred miles an hour with my hair on fire if I were selling houses or cars.
Still, I hate when I hear teachers claim they do this job because they love kids. I do this job because at one time, I was a special young mathematician and have an ability to teach tough concepts in an understandable way. I teach high school math because I am good at it and I am compensated in a reasonable manner. I teach because I can.