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Friday, May 16, 2008

Happy Teacher's Day

For as long as I can remember, I've always wanted to be a teacher. When I was smaller, I not only 'forced' my sibling to play school with me, but I actually taught them to read and count.. at least THAT'S what they say anyway hehe.. I took it very seriously then.

We had a guest room downstairs and that room was my classroom. Abah and Mama would happily supply me the money I needed to make posters, exercise books, red ink pens (to a kid, a red ink pen is soooo grown up haha..) and stationery for the little ones (starting from Ikram, to Izati and down to Iskandar!).

It started when Ikram was small. He was always tagging along whenever me, Iwan and Adi did our homework so one day, I bought him a 20 sen exercise book and wrote down the alphabet for him to copy, just so he won't bug us so much. He finished it in record time and before long I was teaching him number. When he mastered simple arithmatic, he wanted more so I started teaching him reading and voila! The 'seed of desire' in being a teacher has been in me since.. and I was in standard 3 at that time :) Imagine how many years have past *shudders to think that I'm old*

However, when I wanted to apply for teaching, Abah totally disagreed though I don't understand why since he's a lecturer a.k.a teacher himself and he had been kinda supportive when I wanted to teach my siblings. Well, after trying to convince him.. AND losing the 'argument', I admitted defeat. Thats how I ended up doing engineering.

But don't get me wrong, I enjoy the field I finally chose for my studies. Never thought there were so many interesting things in this world (Don't be fooled.. just because I say I like it, doesn't mean I excelled greatly in my studies hahah..)

Then one day when I had already started my MSc, I went for lunch with kak Chah and she was talking about the physics class she taught in a tuition centre. I remembered how much I wanted to be a teacher, and how quiet that voice of reason has been eversince I started my bachelors degree so rather jokingly I told kak Chah, "klau ade kosong, bagitau la.."

A few days later, she told me there was an opening and that she had already informed the owner about me. Errkk! I was suprised but since I had said that to her, I thought I'd just give it a try. Truth is, I actually think my teaching skills have become rusty thorugh out the years..

But to cut the long story short, I loved it from day one :)

I love it when I could see the change in those faces when they finally understand what I was trying to teach them..

I love it when they ask questions as a sign, they actually listened to me talking..

I love it when they tell me they enjoy my class..

I love it when they tell me they have improved..

I love it when they tell me they have fallen in love with maths because of me.. (okay, ni bunyi cam perasan la kan hahah.. but I'm a normal human being, and I love knowing that I've made a differance!)

I love it when they ask if I could still teach them next year..

I love it when they come up to me outside class, even when I myself have forgotten them.. a bit!

That's the reward of teaching.. the satisfaction I get when doing one thing I love.. Thats who teachers are, the silent heroes who change the world classroom by classroom!

So imagine my suprise when I got this sms from the 'owner' last night (Oppss, I could get sacked if this blog gets into his hands!)

"Jadikan pendidikan sebagai satu bisnes, bukan lagi satu kebajikan. Tingkatkan mobiliti sosial dengan jadi kaya!"

Well, thats not the whole sms. I'm not risking putting the whole sms just in case anyone related gets a wind of this but seriously, I felt so down!

I mean, a teacher is supposed to make a differance.. or try to make one. The goal in the end is actually to see the younger generation succeed in life no matter what. Its sad that the goal has now changed to making as much money as possible. I've known a few school teachers who don't teach well at school and ask their students to take their tuition class so they can succeed.. I mean, bull!

Your responsibility is in the school! Not outside. Extra classes are okay ONLY if they need extra coaching, but the basics should be learnt in school. I had a teacher like this once, and they way she treated the student who didn't take her tuition class (me included!) was way different from the way she treated the non-tuition students. Once, it was even an issue when the school found out she had given questions almost similar to exam questions to her tuition class.. man!

I dunno, it just doesn't feel right. And now, though I'm not a school teacher, I somehow feel as if I'm involved in this money-chasing scheme.. when all I wanted was to only become a teacher.


I'm seriously considering whether or not I should still teach next year.. I don't like the goal set by this place but I still love teaching (though I sometimes lose temper with my childish students!)

I dunno.. just feeling a bit upset I guess..

Anyway, Happy Teacher's Day to all teachers :)

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