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Monday, 20 June 2016

Your Voice Matters

Your Voice Matters.

Reflections of today.
Making learners realize about the importance to speak up.

Since that first early moment I got the contact with a group of teens this year, I felt something special, that something which makes you think they are so quiet and there must be a reason for that.

First days I got the pleasure to be co-tutor with a Math teacher an incredible educator and human being, thanks Roger for that awesome support and your amazing encouragement.

Days go on and I realize, those kids wanted to have a book open on page “34” or something similar, some of them even asked me: Miss, when are we going to do grammar worksheets?
It was sad to notice they thought the way of learning was through a paper, then I started thinking on the idea about how to make them become noisy in the good sense of the word, of course; as everytime I saw them, their faces wanted to cry out many stuff, but something inside did not let them do that. Fear? A bad concept of respect? Or maybe the lack of being listened?
Bingo!!!, it was a mix of all of them, but one  got the first place: they were not being listened, they got information priceless aim for some colleagues, and what about  their thoughts, opinions, critics, beliefs, ideas of those teens. Unfortunately, they  were sadly dead.

Somehow there was a way those teens need to express their sayings, we started by working on collaborative tasks:  collaborative writing, collaborative speaking activities, collaborative reading and also collaborative listening, the last one has been the hardest as they could not listen to each other, Why? Nobody remained them, the importance of being listened and being respectful among peers.
Little by little with warm up actvities base on values according to their age, because believe me no teen would care about values stuff for us adults, so I had to be on their shoes and think about the way they do, and mainly how they have been feeling.

It was amazing and the most remarkable time to see how the groups of those teens have started to critize things, say they disagree and give supportive reasons, how tolerance flows up in the class, and how they realize there was time to be aware their voice matters.

They were learning English, but nobody noticed , Why? Because I was not on page 34 exercise 3b, EXACTLY!! I was in another syllabus, the humanizing syllabus, the one for building awareness, which is vital for every individual as  the need to speak up, they could show how great their creativity is, and little by little  go deeply in what they want to defend and say to adults.
Still remember once a group  told me, what about if you bring the school authorities,teachers, and our parents and we make them sit down to give them a talk, the big questions: "Will they listen to us?" " Who knows?" " Who cares?" “WE DO!!”

Let’s do it!! That’s how my baby proposal has grown to make my learners become speakers, to express their inside, to inform what really happens in a teen life, to educate we adults to stop labeling teens for being teens and please think beyond.

Last month, they finally could understand a test is a paper , a grade is a number, but it was not as significant as the reward to feel they do something more than completing a paper, I asked them to go over Lima to work on a Project of cultural awareness and realize both sides of our country, not just the pinky one, also to check and remember our tragedy times of terrorism , those times most of their parents lived as I did, to ask people in the streets what they think about a particular place and realize life is not only school, as in a few months they will be leave  school and go to  the true world, and they should be aware  they need to be ready. My best reward the great satisfaction they did produce the language in what they do enjoy and many of them have discovered the ties of empathy among themselves.

I am not sure how many got me, but my sensation does not lie to me, I made those teens believe it is time to close books, it is time to talk about the news around the world, around our own town, it was time to think about how we can contribute in a better way to this society,  it was time to say: 


In honour of my fifth graders!


Monday, 29 February 2016

"Preaching Collaborative Learning: Brazil and Peru joined for the same cause."

"Alone we are smart, TOGETHER we are brilliant." - Steven Anderson

Last January, a group of educators joined the same cause, working on our CPD. That was great a chance to join in such as awesome community as The iTDi to take this adventure and learn together with our tutor Ms Penny Ur, taking  the course: "Course materials: design, selection and use." 
I  still remember every single second of our live sessions and the enthusiasm of all of the participants, who were so touched by such a great tutor and community as The iTDi, we learnt not only to design, select, and use a textbook, we did learn how to share and contribute each other through a wise and happy community. After the live sessions , shoots of photos were inmedialtely posted on social medial, because we felt we needed to say others: "This is the way to learn, this is the way to pray what we teach our students, this is the path to follow... 

Then sweet Barbara was always sending the recordings and reminders of our assigments, and at that moment all the party started in the forums with the stunning contribution of assigments and discussions we have had during January, we were 75 members of different countries, no matter distance, no matter time, we were all joined for the same cause .. Learning in a collaborative way for our students and of course to keep on learning.
So that's why this lovely idea was born, three educators and friends now from Brazil and Peru would like to express their sayings about how meaningful this course and community has meant to us:
It is my pleasure to interview two awesome colleagues from Brazil, Danilo Ribeiro and Thiago Castilho:
1.- Who is Danilo Ribeiro?

Hello! It’s me! My name is Danilo Ribeiro. I am from São Paulo Brazil. Family and friends usually recognize me because of two Paramount facts about me: I absolutely love reading and teaching. When I became a teacher, I was a bit clueless about this profession. I knew I had the hang of it, because according to my mom, I used to teach my toys. LOL. However, It took me exactly a year to understand that teaching is not about me, but it is about the students, and it is my duty as a teacher to provide them with high-quality learning instruction. Nowadays, I teach young learners and adults, prepare students for the FCE exam amongst other duties. I hold the CELTA and the ICELT, I am an oral examiner for the Cambridge main suite exams as well as a clerical marker for IELTS.

2.- What did it make you to take the decision to take Penny Ur Course with the iTDi?

One of my ex-teachers took a face-to-face course with Barb, and Chuck. So she recommended my taking the course. Furthermore, I am interested in materials/course design, so I believed that in addition to providing me with a review on these areas, it gave me plenty of stimulating, valuable ideas to share and use in class.

3.- How did you find the community, live sessions, rapport among colleagues and new friendships which were born there? 

 Well, never have I taken an online course with so much interaction! Actually, most of the online courses I have taken are done at my own pace, with very few interaction with other participants. The iTDi team exceeded all my expectations! Firstly, I was part of a lively community of competent, skilled teachers. Some of them were teacher trainers, others novice. What made the whole course awesome was that not only did I learn from experienced teachers, but I was also able to contribute to novice teachers with ideas as well as have experienced teachers comment on my ideas. The live sessions were always the best moment of my Sunday. While Penny was delivering her lesson, we were able to express our feelings, and other people would share the same feelings, criticize them, but offer a solution. Overall, the community has given me life-long friends/teachers to whom I will always be grateful for their support, constructive feedback and advice.

4.- If you could choose the most relevant thing you got from this course with the iTDi what would you choose and why? 

I would like to mention a topic that provided me with food for thought. During the course, Penny mentioned stereotypical messages portrayed in books, which raised my awareness of sexism, ideologies amongst other topics. What really struck a chord with me was the course participants’ feedback on how I handle these issues as they appear in the book. My approach to handling these issues was praised. However, I did not take it for granted; instead, I made all their comments my stepping to stone to be better prepared to tackle problems as they appear.

5.- Why would you recommend to join the iTDI community to all teachers ? 

Teachers, if you are willing to learn from other teachers, this is a golden opportunity to seize. Besides contributing to a huge learning community, you will also have the opportunity to have feedback on your ideas and see how other teachers approach the same topic given the fact that everybody is on the same page in the course.

6. How are you adapting in your own classes what we have been taught in Penny Ur course with the iTDi  according to your students' needs? 

Most of the ideas were not new to me because I am an avid reader of Penny’s books. However, some of her ideas have been helping me engage the students and make learning more meaningful. I believe Penny’s feedback on a writing game I was used to doing totally changed my view on how I prepare/deliver my classes. Now, I am much more aware of how to design materials and make teaching subordinated to learning as the proponent of the Silent way suggested.

 1.- Who is Thiago Castilho?

I am Thiago, English teacher for 7 years, CELTA and CPE holder. Born in Brasilia, living in Sao Paulo, Interested in technology applied to learning and intercultural exchanging. I believe that you can only survive in the world as it is by considering it as a whole, taking advantage of your own cultural heritage and what makes you unique. As teachers, we are bridges between what students were in their own limited view and what there is for them to take, to conquer, to achieve. This is my belief. 
My life in ELT began in 2009, when I decided to take an offer in a school next to my house. Teaching English is considered a part-time, underqualified job in many schools here in Brazil, so though I did not hold a degree at the time, I had to make a living. Little did I know that I would fall in love with what I did, and I pursued further development. I left Brasilia (my hometown) and my job at Casa Thomas Jefferson (some of the educators I admire the most are still there) to Sao Paulo, with my wife-to-be at that time. The best thing about my job is the range of opportunities to improve, to connect with other amazing professionals and learn more each and every day.

2.- How did you decide to take Penny Ur Course with the iTDi? 

Penny Ur is one of who I call the ELT popstars! You know, professionals you look up to, people always recommend a book or an article by them, and you never think you will have the chance to meet them? Well, iTDi offered the chance to have an actual course with her, and I am happy I did not let the opportunity pass on by, and I will never regret it. Penny provided us with great ideas, discussions, feedback and attention.

3.- In your own experience How did you find the community, live sessions, rapport among colleagues and new friendships which were born there?

The first thing that comes to my mind is to know, in first hand, how our ELT environment is around the world. There were plenty of professionals from all continents, with plenty of stories, with their own challenges and mountains to climb. I caught myself reading plenty of stories, comparing them to my own, imagining how it would be to teach in a different country and if I was ready to handle it the way they brilliantly did. During lectures, everybody was so respectful and shared helpful contributions. I learnt a lot and I also feel how much I still have to do. And I could never feel as excited as this!

4.-If you could choose the most meaningful  thing you got from this course with the iTDi what would you choose and why? 

The people we got to know in the course, there is no doubt. We learned a lot together, with Penny's gentle leading and support. It made my Sunday mornings much better, I actually missed them when we finished the course.

5.- Why would you recommend to join the iTDI community to all teachers ? 

There should always be a time in our normally busy when we leave some time for ourselves, for our own development. I highly recommend iTDi because all teachers are very friendly and the environment is very conducive to learning and sharing. All teachers trainers and other teachers welcomed everybody, you feel safe to share and reflect upon your own practice, and there are examples from all over the world to help you with that. If you need an opportunity of self-reflection, you would like to meet great professionals and learn from great tutors, iTDi is your call.

6.- How are you adapting in your own classes what we have been taught in Penny Ur course with the iTDi  according to your ss needs? 

Penny offered plenty of alternatives to do routine steps I overused in my own classes. Classes feel lighter, as my repertoire has increased, and students give valuable feedback as to what estimulates them. Therefore, I can personalize my classes better, I feel I have been given valuable tools to improve my own teaching practice. I feel more encouraged to try new approaches out, check how students react to it and improve whenever needed. 

Last words: 

 "Teachers, you are not alone! You have companions all over the world who can lend you a hand and help you through even the darkest of days! The more we share, the more empowered we are."

Special thanks to all the iTDi Board and community from teachers to teachers.

Danilo, Thiago, and Patty.

Monday, 21 December 2015

Have you ever felt like giving up? ... Inspiration and Encouragement key factors

A year ago I took the decision to start blogging my own sayings about ELT and mainly in the aspect of the humanistic side in teaching.

It has been a year, today December 21st and still has with the same goals, dreams and beliefs in what I feel and think about teaching.
After a year many things has been happening to me, and I bet to all of us, changes are so often for everyone nowadays, and sometimes the feeling of giving up as humans being comes to our mind; it is so normal and most of times because of the last different issues of our own society and the system of life we have been living...

This year 2015 with its ups and downs has taught me a lot that we may not change the whole system, and sometimes feel  that with the world last issues we are heading to nowhere, that our role as educators or as a person is coming weaker without any support from the big ones of our society/or current system, then I thought this feeling like giving up might fly into our minds and feel like it is time to do something else.. so what to do at that time and when we feel our own problems as a person, not only as an educator is also affecting us our main goal in Education and the lack of the vital motivation we need to go on even any circumstances in the whole world and our personal ones is leaving us...

     Then ... What to do? In my humble experience:

  • Believe...
  • Give a look to your roots, to your memories when we felt that awesome passion for being on the spot in our first own class, to my first students, that first class, to all the road that we have been walking
  • Let others inspire you, in my case to all my awesome PLN who have been inspired me in many moments.
  • Focus on others, being an inspiration , a supporter, no matter what you are living in a bad moment, when you keep helping others your mind is busy and concentrating more in others than you.              ..In our blessing role as Educators, those ones who can be our main motivation to go on, and to keep fighting are our kids, no matter the age, children, teenagers or adults. I always call them my kiddos as that's my goal in life to support them to lead their own lives, more than giving knowledge of a language or academic issues. 
  • Keep on being busy in your CPD, not only for getting more students passing an international examination, grow up your CPD for touching learners' hearts and in that way they will be able to be ready for being engaged with you in class and outside in many cases too.

  • Make RAPPORT born in your class, not only see the learner as person who is there because his/her parents sending them or the company is paying the course, try to feel those who are looking at you, are as humans as you are, and need the magnificent rapport for a successful class environment thinking always in their benefits.

  • Last but not least, "KEEP FAITH" to that superior strength which has been given to us from our Lord, , and that FAITH will let us go on because God is Love, and whatever circumstances we are facing, if we call him in the right way, God will hold our hands.

Of course, there are still many reasons to go on and to be grateful for one year more, for this first anniversary blogging, and having the great satisfaction to share my sayings with you all, but something else has come to my mind, all those people who I have touched their lives somehow, my kids, maybe the ones that God has allowed to feel the honour to be a mum for many of them and feel that love and such a gorgeous rapport that has been a blessing for me to create in my lessons, so my dear readers ... There is NO TIME TO GIVE UP, of course not, and I do think many of us might feel like experimenting  the same anytime or on a bad day. 

The road to walk is so long in our mission and my passion for what we like and mainly choose doing, our beliefs, love for our students and the great inspiration and encouragement I have received this year from many teachers of my wonderful PLN and true friends who have come to my life as blessings at the right moment I have needed them.Now...the perfect moment to mention those KEY WORDS for me... INSPIRATION and ENCOURAGEMENT... I have had the honour to feel inspired for my amazing PLN and friends with great examples to keep on doing what we should do, and see how they have overcome things with also their own circumstances , being more than colleagues, friends in good and bad times, no matter the distance we are...

This year I can't close it without mention these special people for me from my PLN:  

  • Ms Sophie Nicol. (Greece)
  • Ms Theodora Papapanagiotu. (Greece)
  • Ms Christina Chorianopoulou.  (Greece)
  • MsVicky Papageorgiou.  (Greece)
  • Mrs Gordana Popovic.  (Servia)
  • Mrs Georgia Psarra.  (Greece)
  • Mr George Ochendo Raptopoulos.  (Greece)
  • Mrs Cécile Florenty- Paspa.  (France)
  • Mrs Cherith Naomi Hoove.  (The U.S.)
  • Mr Chuck Sandy.  (The U.S.)
  • MrVictor Hugo Rojas.  (Peru)
  • Ms Kristina Smith.  (Turkey)
  • Mr Emmanuel Kontovas.  (Greece)
  • Mr Syke Annamma Kumaran.  (India)
  • Ms Julie Rakiou.  (Greece)
  • Ms Fabiana Casella.  (Argentina)
  • Mr Jeffrey Doonan. ( The U.S)
  • Mr Graeme Hodgson.  (England)
  • Mr Ken Wilson,  (England)
  • Mrs Liliana Simon.  (Argentina) 
  • Ms Monica Veado.  ( Brazil) 
  • Mrs Rose Bard.  (Brazil)
  • Mrs Ushakiran Wagle (Nepal)
  • Mrs Sue Ann. (Jersey) 
  • Mrs. Chris Stanzer. (Germany)
  • Mrs Anastassia Metallinou.  (Greece)
  • Mrs. Betty Stakios.  (Greece)
  • Mr Dimitris Primalis.  (Greece)

There has been also special people who has been with me and encouraged me a lot during this year , some of them teachers and other friends that I could name them brothers and sisters for me in: 

  • Mr Joel Alfaro.
  • MrsYolanda Espino and MrVidal Salguero.  
  • Mrs Patricia Palacios 
  • Mr Daniel Lu. 
  • Mrs Beatriz Salguero 
  • Mrs Barbara Marrul.
  • Mrs Paola Arias.
  • Fam. Navarrete
  • Ms, Cristina y Sonia De la Barra.
  • Ms Maria Elena Moreno. 
  • Ms Ulbia Moscol.
  • Fam. Kohama. 
  • Mr Diomedes Heredia. 
  • Mr Yuri Heredia. 
  • Ms Paola Ushinahua.
  • Mr Robert Ushinahua.

Definitely all of the people mentioned in this short article are really special for me and the most important they have helped me to grow as a person and as an educator. I think, the result of such inspiration, encouragement and in many cases true friendship and love that comes from all of them through Jehovah has been a blessing for me.

Closing a year, closing a chapter... with new goals, new dreams, and new hopes. My best to you all for a new life chapter in2016 with a closer view of what we need to do and how much grateful we should be every day for the people we have around us, keeping in mind our main focus in our lessons should be those people we choose not only to teach English, we are in charge to improve them as humans first, more than only English learners, and never forget we are so important for our society and our main north should be always focused on others more than thinking in the wrong idea of Giving up. 

No time for that dear readers, in my first year as a blogger I have that new resolution, every day is a new chance to try new things in classes and in our lives, then just think positively and try to do your best as I am sure you all do. 
Thank you ever so much for your time and go on keeping your own essence...

See you next year!

Patty Salguero.
"You are hereby allowed to be happy, to love yourself, to realise your worth, to believe in great things, and to be treated with love and respect."~ P.Salguero.

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

What I learned ... Sharing an important lesson from others

“I’ve learned that no matter what happens, or how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow.
I’ve learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights.
I’ve learned that regardless of your relationship with your parents, you’ll miss them when they’re gone from your life.
I’ve learned that making a “living” is not the same thing as making a “life.”
I’ve learned that life sometimes gives you a second chance.
I’ve learned that you shouldn’t go through life with a catcher’s mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw something back.
I’ve learned that whenever I decide something with an open heart, I usually make the right decision.
I’ve learned that even when I have pains, I don’t have to be one.
I’ve learned that every day you should reach out and touch someone. People love a warm hug, or just a friendly pat on the back.
I’ve learned that I still have a lot to learn.
I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
...Finally I’ve learned it couldn’t be possible not to share this tonight. Thanks, Maya  Angelou, wherever you are for such an inspiration!!


"He aprendido que no importa lo que pase, o lo malo que parece hoy en día, la vida continúa, y será mejor mañana
 He aprendido que se puede decir mucho de una persona por la forma en que él / ella se encarga de estas tres cosas: un día lluvioso, pérdida de      equipaje, y enredado luces del árbol de Navidad.
 He aprendido que, independientemente de su relación con sus padres, se perderá cuando se han ido de su vida.
 He aprendido que el vivir, no es lo mismo que hacer una "vida".
 He aprendido que la vida a veces te da una segunda oportunidad.
 He aprendido que no debemos ir por la vida con guante de catcher en ambas manos; tiene que ser capaz de lanzar algo a cambio.
 He aprendido que cuando decido algo con el corazón abierto, suelo tomar la decisión correcta.
 He aprendido que aún cuando tengo dolores, no tengo que ser uno.
 He aprendido que todos los días se debe extender la mano y tocar a alguien. La gente ama un  abrazo cálido, o simplemente una palmada amistosa en  la espalda.
 He aprendido que aún tengo mucho que aprender...
 He aprendido que la gente olvidará lo que hemos dicho, pero no olvidaran de lo que hicimos, ni cómo las hicimos sentir."
 ... Finalmente he aprendido que no podía ser posible no compartir esta noche. Gracias, Maya Angelou, donde quiera que estés de una inspiración !!

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

A Note to Myself .. A Reflecting Pause

A Note to Myself... 

During last months I was keeping in silence in my blog, different circunstances made this happen, but my passion for what I do, it is a candle with a powerful flame... sometimes I got surprised at my 40's how it is still on.
Tonight after doing some work, I thought I should stop by that side, my side.. but why then?  To write a note to myself.. , a note saying: "Hey, girl the one who is writing this , you are still in the right way with your kids, no matter what else could happen by now in your road, keep on going on"!!!

 I 've got the feeling... that same sensation as I was a teenager when the trip to teach started,when my passion to teach people and understand how a class can change the story of someone's life, how powerful and careful I should take my job and how much love it is involved in teaching from the heart. It's been two decades showing myself how much I can feel in a class, how important is the humanistic side for me rather than the academic many times, and maybe I could have a rough critic for saying that, but that's the way I have always felt it and there is nothing or no one in this universe that will change my mind that the human side is a key factor for the academic side. 

Well, 3043 visits so far tonight, let me tell you all this adventure of blogging about the humanistic side in teaching has given me something else I could not see before and of course  I can't end this post without expressing my special thanks to the person who pushed and encouraged me a bit more to continue this trip, I know you do not like publicity, then thanks from the bottom of my heart to "You".

I believe if there's something I am reconfirming in my own life, it's to fight..Fight for what we think is right, fight for what you believe in, for what's important for you. But most important fight for the ones you love and and never forget to tell anyone how much they mean to you while they are still alive. Life is a journey, not a destination. Do what you've got to now.

"The road is long and the journey as well, this is just the beginning of seven months here blogging in my first steps, and  I do feel so proud and grateful to share with you all my humble work and experience." 
Thank you all , thanks to 3,043 visitors in these seven months!!


Una Nota a Misma...

Durante los últimos meses estuve en silencio en mi blog, diferentes circunstancias hicieron que esto ocurra, pero mi pasión por lo que hago, es una vela con una ponderosa flama... algunas veces me sorprende que aún en mis 40’s esta continua encendida
Esta noche después de hacer algo de trabajo, pensé debería pasar un momento por ese lugar, mi lugar, mi espacio... pero, ¿Por qué? Para escribir una nota a mí misma…, una nota diciendo: “Oye tú, la que está escribiendo esto, aún estas en el sendero correcto con tus chicos, no importa lo que te esté sucediendo por ahora en tu camino, mantente y continua”!!!

Tengo el sentimiento, la misma sensación como cuando era una jovencita adolescente, cuando el viaje a mi carrera a de la enseñanza comenzaba, cuando mi pasión por enseñar personas y entender como una clase puede cambiar la historia de la vida de alguien, que tan poderoso y cuidadoso debo ver mi rol y cuanto amor está involucrado en enseñar con el corazón.
Han pasado dos décadas demostrándome a mí misma cuanto yo puedo sentir en una clase, cuán importante muchas veces es para mí el lado humanístico más aún que el lado académico, y quizá reciba una fuerte crítica por decir esto, pero esta es la manera como siempre lo he sentido y no hay nada, ni nadie en este universo que me hará cambiar mi forma de pensar, ya que para mí el factor humano es el factor base del todo.

 Bueno, 3043 visitas hasta  en esta noche de miércoles, dejénme decirles que esta aventura de bloguear sobre el lado humanístico me ha dado algo más que nunca pude ver,  ni sentir antes, una sensación única de poder escribir desde lo más profundo de mi. 
No podría terminar esta publicación sin expresar mi agradecimiento especial a una persona quien me ha empujado y motivado un  poquito más a continuar en este viaje, sé que no te gusta la publicidad, y por eso mismo solo digo, gracias desde el fondo de mi corazón a: “TI”

Creo que si algo estoy reconfirmando en mi propia vida es luchar, luchar por lo que queremos, por lo que es correcto, por lo creemos, pero lo más importante luchar por los que queremos y nunca olvidar decirle a esas personas cuanto 
significan  ellos para nosotros ahora que están con nosotros. La vida es un viaje, no un destino, hagamos lo que debamos que hacer ahora

“El camino es largo y el viaje también, esto es el inicio de siete meses aquí blogueando en mis primeros pasos, y realmente me siento muy orgullosa y agradecida por compartir con ustedes mi humilde trabajo, pensares, y experiencias.”

Gracias a todos, a los 3043 visitantes en estos siete meses dando un poco más de mí!!


Friday, 24 April 2015

From Another View…

From Another View…

"Friday afternoon, time to go back home from school, but there is something is calling me to write from where I am sitting now, my school desk. A different place where I always write, I love writing at night in my room with my silence and feeling the peace of being with my own memories and researches. This is the place where I am staying now, and where I want to spend the rest of my life, sharing with my kids…The School."

I always thought growing up was something exciting as I was going  to live new things and older people than me would let me do what I wanted to do without limits, I was so wrong!!
My first experience teaching YL and teenagers was ten years ago, after a radical change in my life which made me think it was time to add something to my adults teaching, that plus was the other view of how kids and teenagers learn, but mainly it was to EDUCATE…

In 2005 I started teaching teenagers and by my surprise I was chosen the tutor of the senior high school students, it was something really challenging for me, my first year teaching teens and I was in charge of adolescents who were at their sixteen, seventeen and some even at eighteen. I had to think a couple of days to give a response to my headmaster, it was not easy at all for a teacher like me who had been working all time with adults going to be the tutor of seniors teenagers and be in charge of their last year of their whole school education life. 

For me it was something really meaningful as my memories as a teen came to my mind and it was great to share breaks, chats, classes, jokes and experiences with those teens who had seen me more than a teacher, as a friend who was there to lead you, not just in a subject, I was there to support them in a hard age of their lives.. Adolescence.

Learning is a life for me, a process we can’t stop it, as it is part of our everyday for me, for you, for them…
My first year teaching at school marked in an awesome way my strengths as an educator, I was a teacher, a psychologist, a mum, an aunt or the oldest sister for some, a best friend for many of them. Sharing with those teens made me grow as a person more than a teacher.

After that year I still taught teens and adults as I could not leave my adults classes either, but this time something else was added to my classes, it was to see the happiness, the innocence, the needs, the trouble each of my learner whatever age they were, need to face somehow.
This year I have come back to teach YL and I felt really frightened of them as my last time with that age was when I was at twenty, but this time it was special, this time I was beginning a new experience teaching kids and teens with special needs. It has been a pleasure to see how those souls are integrating and my other kids always help them to integrate to society and real life.
Teaching is really more than having an objective achieved in your syllabus, teaching in real life is being remembered after years and years like the one who was there giving a smile, encouraging them not to give up in any circumstances, the one who laughed, cried with them, and last but not least the one who was listening to them and believed in them when others may have thought their saying was not important.
Being back to school to lead lives of kids and teenagers has been the best decision in life this year so far.

“Never forget that whatever we do and say to these marvelous souls is part of an experience your students will always keep in their hearts.”


Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Making a difference in someone's life..

Looking back  to my teen times and thinking about how a teacher touched my life in a way to let me think that girl called Patty, has had the call in life to be an educator. Then.. What does being an educator imply for a teenager at that time?

Well, to be truly honest I always thought in a teacher who can feel like me, like my peers, our fears, our thoughts, our doubts in adults.. Being a teenager was and is still a really though time in a society like the one we deal it.
Sometimes, I thought if my teachers took time to be in our shoes while planning activities for the class, thinking about what it was stiiting for eight long hours and sharing with them most of the day, many times more hours than what we used to share with our own parents because of their jobs and life duties.
As soon as my questions came to me again and again I thought why nobody cares about what I do have in mind about my education. maybe my partners were having so much fun in our teenager time and of course I did too, but there was an internal call which let me think and rethink the way to learn by living and feeling ...
My like for learning languages was increasing so fast and suddenly the time for applying to a career came to me, I still remember my dad insisting on applying to the management faculty and also still having in mind the many arguments I had with him at that time because I knew I wanted to be an educator, Everybody knows, educators are not the best paid in society, but the ones who really got the spirit of touching a life through teaching,  know that the sensation and the reward is something we  can not describe with words , something you just feel , something that makes your eyes shine when you talk about your students, their accomplishments, their strengths, their weaknesses, their goals, their happiness, their sadness, their lives...
It was not just teaching a subject or getting people full of contexts as if they were a computer to store information, then why storing information? Was Educating about it?
My personal answer after twenty years is : Not at all! 
Teaching young learners, teenagers, adults imply not only to be an instructor, it is to see we, teachers work with human beings with needs, with feelings, with worries, with hearts...

It might be many teachers who could say teaching different ages has got a huge difference, I can only say teaching marks a huge difference in someone's life, as a educator and a life student as my job is teaching I do believe we have a huge responsibility and deep  honour in this society to be the ones who are called the responsible of a future generation for a postive or negative outcome. 
I have lived the experience during all these twenty years and believe me I agree it is not easy at all to lead a life and being a teacher, as maybe our career is the only one which never stops, of course we have a time to end classes, but we never have a time to end our duties and tasks as educators at home. 
I have met many colleagues who were in a time for questioning themselves if it they were in the right path ot it was time to do something else. 
Our duties as educators are not only thinking about how to present a class, what activities, which tool, technology, aids, method, if you are reading me and thinking I am not meaning the academic site, you are right! One of the things we are well known to mark someone's life and make a difference in a human being is the emotional side, the way to see people we have in a class as humans, not just as learners of a subject.
"Take a deep breath and try again", still remember it has been one of my useful phrases with my kids ( no matter age) 
Nobody is saying this job is easy at all, but I do not think  that people that do something with passion and love  can call that something a nightmare job.
Many times we can end a day really tired and at the same time start a day very tired from the previous one, but after these twenty I am really convinced I can figure out myself doing something else than leading people's lives through educating.

Then this short post is for all of us, teachers just a reminder of the awesome blessing of what being an eduactor is against all odds that may show up in our path.

Enjoy your teaching time!