Rollercoaster of life

A rollercoaster I think is an appropriate word. One of my favorite things in the world normally, the excitement, the thrill. But after everything that has so far happened this year a rollercoaster of emotions, from amazing highs to intense lows is not something that has quite the same enjoyment. At this moment I feel that I am slowly crawling my way back up. Sitting on beautiful Caribbean island right now doing what I love, teaching PADI IDC programs is certainly helping that process.

Classroom presentations….the stress!

Classroom time for the PADI IDC

It’s a beautiful dive center here and getting to flex my teaching muscles is always fun. The fact that I can drop off the dock at the back of the dive center into confined water really is getting spoilt. We had an intense day today with theory exams , first classroom presentations and confined water presentations to top it off. I can honestly say, without fail that the classroom presentations are by far the nerve wracking moment for so many students. Throw them in the water and it’s a breeze. Stand them in front of a classroom of fellow students to read aloud and you are suddenly faced with sweaty palms, shaking hands and stuttering. No one likes public speaking.

You could be a teacher…

You are on your way to PADI Divemaster, maybe already thinking about instructor. Scuba diving is what you love. Being in the water. Blowing bubbles. How amazing. The fact that you are becoming a “teacher’ doesn’t actually cross your mind. It didn’t mine. ” I could never be a teacher!” was something I distinctly remember saying one day. It wasn’t until I was one year into being a scuba instructor that it dawned on me! Call me a muppet if you will but standing in a primary school classroom teaching kids is what I envision for teachers. Not floating in water blowing bubbles.

The rewards

Teaching on the ocean
Teachin Open water in Costa Rica

Being a teacher is an amazingly rewarding job. Nerve wracking yes, mentally draining,….can be.  Inspiring? For sure! With scuba diving for starters you have an advantage. People come to you because they “want to learn”. The majority of students at least. It’s harder to inspire when it’s a subject that they may dread. For example maths!! Then, your classroom is the ocean. Your teaching assistants are fish. These are just some of the amazing reasons.

So, why consider teaching?

So, thinking about inspiration, here’s my thoughts on why you should consider teaching.

You can transform lives

You as an educator have the potential to transform someones life. By teaching them scuba, you could be helping them achieve a life long goal. You could be building up their confidence. Inspiring them to take on new challenges in all aspects of their life. With adaptive teaching this can be even more apparent. Crossing a hurdle that they never thought they could accomplish, both mentally and physically. 

You can be creative

Teaching is about being creative. Not everyone learns in the same way.  You have to adapt and be creative to find the way that works for the person. Thinking outside the box is a something that occurs regularly and it is fun to do. It is about you as the instructor adapting to what the student needs in a fun and creative way.

You can share your enthusiasm and passion for something

An underwater classroom, share the passion

My guess is that you are a scuba diver because you enjoy exploring the ocean. You are passionate about it and what to scream it to the world. As a instructor you can do that even more. With the students divers that come to you, you can talk about all aspects of the underwater world that inspire you. Pass on your passion. Inspire them. It’s addictive. Introduce them to things that they never even thought about. The excitement of finding a nudibranch, the territoriality of the damsel fish. There is so much more to the underwater world than they realize!

You are learning too

With every new class and student I learn something new. It may be a new way to demonstrate a skill, it may be a fact about fish you didn’t know.  One of the most important attributes of an instructor is to be humble. Open your mind to learning from your students and accept that we are all human and we make mistakes. Admit it when you do and learn when you can. Your students will respect you for it.

Have I convinced you?

I hope so. Teaching is certainly an inspiring job on so many levels and allows you to grow as a person. Want to share your passions? Then maybe it is something you should consider. You will be amazed by what you can achieve and help others to do so. After my whirlwind of a month, the inspiration and joy that I feel from inspiring new scuba instructors is welcome. I hope it will do the same for you.