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Reet Kikkas: there is still something to learn!

As an educator, what are the moments when you recognize yourself - I have such a great job!

Reet Kikkas

Short bio

I have half a century of teaching experience as the director and physics teacher of Jõgeva Adult High School. I also supervise the school's student council and help teachers acquire computer knowledge and use it in practice, including working in electronic learning environments. In 2022, I was elected Jõgeva County Educator of the Year laureate.

My story

I received teacher training at the University of Tartu. After graduating from university, I worked in two schools in my hometown. One of them was a day school, and the other was called a distance learning high school, i.e. a school for adults. On the road to becoming an educator, I consider my teachers the experienced colleagues at the distance education school. From one colleague I learned good subject and methodical instructions, while from another I learned tricks on how to communicate with adult learners. I admired their work, and I am very grateful to them. This is also the reason, after a few years, I chose the adult school as my main job. What followed was several years of independent study to find my way as an educator and constantly develop myself. Being an educator has been my life's work.

To train others, the trainer must constantly learn how to prepare and conduct the training, the analyze results, such as what went well, what not so well, and what did not work. The trainer is developed by his trainees.

You can see your mistakes from them and make corrections. Cooperation with colleagues and exchange of experiences is also necessary. Independent work with newer literature and pieces of writing is important, as well as participation in training and seminars to keep yourself up to date with the latest.

As an educator, what are the moments when you recognize yourself - I have such a great job!

I enjoy when a learner comes to ask for advice or simply to talk to organize school life better with their suggestions, or comes and gives thanks, as is customary at graduation ceremonies. When new students come in the fall and are anxious and even a little scared about the school journey ahead, if I can calmly explain to them what and how the school will be and they stay in school and finish their studies after several years, I feel it is great! I consider one of the most important tasks to be the return of young people without basic education, especially young men, to school.

Trainers must constantly improve themselves; there is still something to learn!

Reet Kikkas

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I enjoyed that the article speaks about the importance of analyzing the results when completing the task or the whole training program. I also thinks it is very much needed to discuss what went well, what not so well, and what did not work at all. It gives feeling of completion and honest attitude towards yourself. Without recognizing what are the new things, ideas, skills or inspiration gained during the training or studies it feels like there is something missing, like you didn't have a chance to express all those thoughts and feelings experience during the process. Sometimes it is difficult to admit to yourself that training was not what you expected or wanted, but because of this final analysis one can recognize that the best things gained during the training is maybe new friends or inspiring thoughts which potentially will lead to something completely new!

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