I WAS sad to read this week of the teacher recruitment crisis as fewer applicants are putting themselves forward for teacher training.

I never wanted to do anything other than teach (aside from very brief adolescent dreams of being either a rock star or Prime Minister) and have never once regretted the choice of career.

Teaching is both hugely rewarding and endlessly challenging; you have never learned how it do perfectly, and therein lies one of the many joys.

A non-teaching friend once asked me if it ever got boring teaching "the same things all the time", but I can honestly say I have never taught exactly the same lesson twice, since pupils’ reactions and questions very much determine the course a lesson might take and, as a teacher, you are continually adapting your teaching in order to find the best way to communicate with and inspire your pupils.

My father, who had to leave school at the age of 14 and perhaps more than most therefore appreciated the benefits education can bring, had the utmost respect for teachers, and used to say to me when I was growing up that teaching was a "noble profession" and the best way to give back to society.

I couldn’t agree more and would say to anyone who is thinking about going into teaching that, while it can be very demanding, the benefits are numerous; here are my own personal top five.

1 As an academic, it is a privilege to teach your subject and have the opportunity to inspire a new generation.

2 Teaching is life affirming. It is all about people: pupils, parents, colleagues. If you like working out what makes others trick, teaching may well be for you!

3 You will never be bored; every day will be different.

4 Schools are mini-societies and, if you choose to progress into management, you might have the chance to develop skills in many other areas: pastoral care, working with children’s agencies, financial management, marketing as well as developing leadership skills.

5 You will have the opportunity to change lives.

I once worked in a school where a sign in the staff room read: "To teach is to touch a life forever".

What better reason could there be than to try a career in teaching? The best way to spend your working life, in my view.