Teacher Well-Being

Teacher Well-Being / Teacher Identity / Who Is the Teacher, as a Person?

Who Is the Teacher, as a Person?

To help expand your views of how different personal/cultural factors and how one‘s life experience contribute to teacher identity, here are some ideas that came from brainstorming amongst IRC staff in West and East Africa:

Personal Identity Elements
Who are teachers as people?

Contributing personal and cultural factors

  • Gender

  • Race/ethnic/tribe/clan group

  • Age

  • Self-esteem/self-confidence

  • Religious beliefs

  • Personal relationships

  • Physical appearance: e.g., uniform, dress code

  • Other beliefs and attitudes – cultural

  • Language

Contributing life experiences

  • Past experiences (including trauma)

  • Legal status – as refugee, returnee, etc.

  • Level of education

  • Professional certification

  • Experience working with children

  • Facilitation skill

  • Other professional skills

Question for Reflection/Discussion:

What do you think about this list? In what ways are these items similar or different to the ones you listed? In what ways are they different?


In your context, which important issues shape teacher identity? Make a list of them. If you had to rank these issues, which would you say has the most potential for affecting a teacher‘s ability to teach effectively? What elements do you think are important to the community's perception of teachers? Now discuss with a colleague your list of issues and why you ranked them as you did.

Definition: trauma

an emotional or psychological injury