This summer, a Wesley icon retired – mathematics teacher Mr Peter Trend, after an incredible 46 years teaching at Wesley College. Before leaving, Mr Trend shared three of his life lessons with the College magazine, The Wesleyan. Here, we reproduce the article:
In the words of the retiring Peter Trend, the impact of a teacher is often hard to measure:
‘As teachers, the biggest influence you have you may never know about. People take various things from your classes that, at the time, you may not have thought much about. It’s that influence that you can’t count or measure, and of which you are often unaware, that is what you’re most proud of as a teacher.’
With a remarkable 46-year tenure of teaching Mathematics at Wesley College, the scope of Peter’s impact is not only widespread, but also immeasurable. He has been an inspiring educator for our students, a much-loved mentor and confidant for our staff, and most importantly, an invaluable member of our community. Both inside and outside the classroom, we are incredibly fortunate to have had Peter involved with the College for so long.
Leaving the Wesley College community with one final gift, Peter shared with us his top three life lessons.
- Whether on a personal or a professional level, relationships are important. They are what define your success in life. If you are leading a happy and successful life, there’s every chance that your relationships are strong.
- Nothing is ever an absolute. As a teacher, you may think a student is not doing the right thing, but there is often a story behind that. Everything is contextual and most things are relative. That’s true of life. You must get the full picture, and once you do, you will often realise that there is not one true answer to the problem at hand.
- It’s important to not feel inclined to accept every change that comes your way. As I have become older, I have become a little bit more conservative. These days, there is so much change that there’s an inevitability about it. I argue that many changes need to be carefully examined in terms of philosophy. You need to go back and ask ‘is this doing what we thought it would be doing?’ There’s no point in changing things for the sake of change. You need a strong philosophical base and an appraisal process. The practice should be an extension of the philosophy.
Thank you for your service, Peter, and we wish you all the best as you get to travel outside of school holidays, spend more time with your eight grandchildren and put your new set of golf clubs to good use.
This article first appeared in the Wesley College magazine, The Wesleyan. To read more articles from Summer 2019 edition, please click here.
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