Teaching as Mountaineering

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“Teaching as mountaineering”, written by U.S. Author Nancy K. Hill, talks about the analogies of teaching. After analyzing the inadequacy of those most common analogies, the author proposed a new analogy to the teachers—mountaineers. However, I do not think that teaching is not like mountaineering. Teaching is not as risky as mountaineering. People are likely to meet difficult and harsh situation such as steep terrain and bad weather which may cause disasters to the whole team once someone makes a mistake. Nancy pointed out the peril of mountaineering in her own experience with Fritz. She assumed that if she had slipped into deep mountain crack, she might well have dragged Fritz with her. She also mentioned that mountaineering means "an active acceptance of responsibility for one's own fate", but in teaching the mistakes may not result in serious consequences associated with lives. What's more, students will come across many teachers which can correct the mistakes caused by previous teachers. Therefore, in mountaineering, "the excitement, the risk, and the need for rigorous discipline" do not correspond with that in teaching. Mountaineer guide just teaches the teammates to masker physical skills—mountaineering skills, but the teacher teaches students not merely physical skills, but more mental skills. The mountaineer who leads an expedition needs to teach his teammates how to cross the terrain, how to overcome the bad weather, how to scale the height, and at last how to return safely to the earth. However, besides delivering the knowledge to students, the teacher makes an important impact on students' thinking and behavior. Not everyone can participate in such a precarious activity such as the children and the old. However, teaching can involve everyone in it. Mountaineering has its limited requirement for the participators. They are usually required to physically strong and are brave to take risks and to accept challenges. On the contrary, people, despite of...
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