All most all of my career life as a teacher saw me struggling with the volume of my voice while teaching. As I saw today’s prompt I smiled, smiled with my cheeks turning red! I thought, for me, the volume is the biggest issue and how they know about it!!
Always liked to teach. Started teaching while I was very young and pursuing my graduation. Fortunately, I was good in studies, all my juniors from my neighbourhood used to come to me to learn Mathematics. Some used to come to discuss Science topics too. In this way, when I fell in love with teaching, I never knew. But that was mainly tutorials with very few students around. When I finished my long study period and thought to join a job, obvious choice was teaching. I never realised teaching needs a good larynx too.
First few classes went with some kind of nervousness. All most hundred students seeking a professional degree used to sit in front of me to learn. Yeah, that’s the normal size of a class of a developing nation. I had to take care of a crowd sized classroom. And, slowly, I realized students are struggling to listen to me. But they were not complaining as I was new and perhaps they were pleased with me. I started observing that whenever I entered the class room, some boys used to move from last benches to first rows. I noticed for few days and kept on wondering about it. When I settled down and got the responsibility of conducting laboratory classes too, I came into contact with students closely. Usually size of a laboratory class is very small as it is batch wise. I could explain them well and students also overcame the fears and hesitations. After few days, I asked few of my favourite students, the reasons for the change of sitting arrangements in my class, they smiled. Said, “Mam, if you don’t mind, can you please be little louder? We have no problems with the way you teach, rather we love to hear your lectures, but as your voice is low we can’t hear you.” Then they said me many more things so that I don’t get hurt. I came home, thinking all the way about raising the volume of my voice.
My professor husband came in to raise my mood. He guided me how to reach to every students, how to handle a class when there are hundred students, how to do voice modulation so that students remain attracted towards the lecture. Then my practice started to raise my volume and volume modulation. Now I am comfortable, and my students too. And I never suffered from laryngeal oedema or laryngeal dysfunction!!