This is a great question that I wished we asked others more often - not just educators, but students. Too often we ask students to focus on a product or the WHAT, but we don't ask them the why. Why should you do this, Why is this important, Why is this relevant.
As educators, we need to ask ourselves this question often - why do I do what I do? And, we need to challenge students to focus on the whys: why do they do what they do. That is far more important than the whats.
At the end of the day, I am evaluated on what I do. However, how well I do that is greatly affected by why I do what I do. And, the answer is simple: I love it. I absolutely love teaching. I've loved it since I was a 7-year old girl, tying my brother up to the chair, and forcing him (a 4-year old) to read.
What rubs off on others are the whys - not necessarily the whats. Yes, I impact others because of my knowledge and understanding of various tools and strategies. However, it's the whys that capture them.
At our district, many teachers go to Capture Kids' Hearts training. And, I often see and hear teachers using technology as a substitute for the teacher. Though, I could go on and on this subject, I'll make it simple.
Technology engages kids and teachers capture kids. The is the difference between the whats and the whys. Technology is needed, but without the why, without the teacher, it does not have the same impact.
Why do I do what I do? I love to help others learn. In some ways, I enjoy facilitating that learning and, in other ways, I enjoy solving problems and coming up with new solutions. Teaching is problem solving.
Be the why to your students. Capture them.
Why do you do what you do?