How teaching is like a chef. What teaching is: Reflections of new teachers, part 4 (final episode!)

I’m a little sad to post not only because these preservice teachers have left the halls of Mount Holyoke College, but because this is the last post of their reflections! This was an open reflection, no prompt, no sentence frame.


  • Teaching is like the song Let it Go from Frozen because you must let go of fears and nerves in order to tackle curiosities and explore the living world of the classroom.
  • Teaching is like Tetris.  You desperately want everything to fit in, but it is so hard!
  • Teaching is like being a chef.  You must mix the ingredients (students and knowledge) together and hopefully they mix well.  Even if it’s not what you expected, if should still be edible.
  • Teaching is like cooking.  You have to balance the ingredients with technique.
  • A teacher is like a gardener.  They plant ideas and tend to the garden, but also step back and let things grow.
  • Teaching is like “Floppy Bird” because it takes a lot of time and practice to get to the next level.

As you have read this series of microblogs, I hope you have reflected on what teaching is to you! I sure have. To me, teaching is the universe…I learn more and more everyday, and feel like I only know the tip of the iceburg, one tiny slice of the immense beauty of space!

I would love to hear your thoughts below. What is teaching to you? Let’s see what we can come up with!

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  • TriciaEbner

    Love these!

    I love these snapshots into how these preservice teachers are thinking about their chosen field. Interesting how many of them have chosen to compare it to a creative endeavor–

    Tough question, too! So here’s my attempt:

    Teaching is like making a patchwork quilt. You have lots of different fabrics with different patterns, textures, and colors, and you bring them together with stitches of new learnings and new understandings, but still honoring the unique qualities of each individual fabric.



  • MeganAllen

    Love this! Building on the quilt…

    Hi Tricia! I’m building on the quilt metaphor. When you look back on the quilt, you can reflect on all the beautiful learners in your life and how they have grown and fit together. Then you use that quilt/reflection to keep you warm when times get chilly! 🙂

    Thanks for playing,Tricia!


  • DeidraGammill

    Master Chef
    In the culinary world, a master chef is someone who creates dishes from scratch, continuously honing his or her skills, refining techniques and relying on customer response and repeat business to measure success. Someone who thaws pre-prepared, frozen entrees is not a chef; no matter how pleasing the presentation, the meal itself falls short. It lacks that master touch which sets it apart from all the other cookie cutter meals, pre-packaged meals designed to be prepared by anyone, no special skills required. This difference is evident not only in the taste and quality of the meals, it is reflected in the level of respect and confidence the consumer has in the master chef as opposed to the invisibility of a worker frying hamburgers that are meant to taste the same in every franchise across the country.

    #TeachingIs becoming master chefs. We must be competent to create our own materials from scratch, collaborating with fellow teachers as we invent and reinvent ourselves to meet the needs of our students; we must also inspire confidence in our consumers that we are the experts, able to govern our profession and provide the best education for each child. Master teachers are experts, constantly learning more about their discipline, seeking, refining, perfecting. Master teachers are innovators, lifelong learners who adjust and adapt to face the challenges of the times.

  • GregKostiuk

    Nice blog Megan, I like the

    Nice blog Megan, I like the style and the metaphors.  Well done.

  • DavidCohen


    Megan, I know you would know better, but I once had some fun taking Checker Finn to task for some silliness about comparing us to chefs. His suggestion was that a chef is judged by outcomes, and therefore, teachers should be too. I had this to say, and even laid down a challenge to Mr. Finn, just for kicks.