Para sa mga Kapwa Guro

Mahal kong mga kapwa guro,

Dito ko po ilalagay ang mga bagay na maaaring makatulong sa inyong pagtuturo saan man sa Pilipinas 🙂

Nagmamahal,

T.JM

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The Art of Letter Writing

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My kids have been exchanging letters with other children in the upper grades. It’s nice to see how letter writing still has that charm that instant messaging doesn’t always have–the absolute need for patience and consequently excitement brought by the mystery of not knowing who you are corresponding with and not knowing when a letter will be coming.

Speaking of letters, I wish I could write my kids one.

Dear (most-of-the-time) adorable kids,

Thank you so much for cheering up T. JM everyday. Thank you for your jokes, mishaps, clumsiness, eureka moments and all the other moments that involve boogers, tears, and whatnot.

You probably don’t see it but T. JM is not ok yet. I’m getting there though so don’t worry because you kids help every single day. Just like what we talk about in our stories, poems, songs and books, we get hurt and scared sometimes even if we don’t want to. Soon enough we will realize that it’s okay to get hurt and scared because these only make us human. And that anyway, people who truly love us will always be there ready to catapult us over and beyond our pains and fears.

So, dear kids, keep playing and smiling. For your family is here to keep you safe and warm. Plus, you have me to share humor with when your pokemon dies, when your dorky diaries book gets lost, when your tooth starts to move, when you want to poop, when you scrape your knee, when a classmate teases you because that classmate likes you and you don’t understand why.

I’ll be here for you because I know what it feels to be scared and hurt.

With warmth and love,
T. JM

The Teacher in His Hospital Bed

My platelet count is going down, I am not yet done with grades

My appetite has gone berserk, I am sure I’ve lost some weight

My sore throat has been stabbed a lot, I can’t swallow, I can’t sing

My skin is now a mestizo’s, red blotches, pink freckles

I am now officially hot, 39 degrees give, take

But all I want to do right now,
is to start getting well fast

I miss my bed, I miss my books,
I miss everything I own

My health, friends,family,students, to everyone my heart belongs.

Iloilo Love Affair

So I went back to Iloilo as part of the Mentoring the Mentors Program (MMP). The only thing different (aside from my weight) is I have more confidence in my being a comparative literature major mainly because of better grades (shallow, don’t you think?).

Well, with that I have come to talk to daycare workers/teachers not just as a pedagogue but as a comparatist-in-the-making as well. If only all teachers were comparatists then everyone would be more critical with the things they teach–especially the literature they use no matter how young their students are.

As I believe in mother-tongue (MT) based teaching and as K+12 will be following principles of MT, I humbly reminded daycare teachers in Iloilo that they have to strengthen their student’s Hiligaynon culture by, at the very least, looking for stories and books in their native language.  Here, I found an example of such a book.

Translated into Hiligaynon by Genevieve Asenjo, this book may just open a child’s world from thinking as an Illonggo to thinking as a human being who is part of this world.

Epistaxis 😛

On a more personal note, the participants really loved my talk on storytelling for teachers (based on their smiles and faces). It was very humbling. I still can’t believe that people listen when I talk (or maybe they are simply forced to). I enjoyed sharing with them as much as I enjoyed listening to accounts of their experiences. Ewan ko ba. Ang saya talaga makipag-usap sa mga kapwa guro tungkol sa aming mga classroom, estudyante ang pagtuturo. Pero syempre, andun pa rin ang mga problema ng mga guro. Kahit saan naman sa Pilipinas madalas pare-pareho lang.

  1. sweldo
  2. mga pasaway na bata
  3. mga pasaway na magulang
  4. mga pagbabago

Anyhow, I love Iloilo. I fell for it the first time I visited to give a similar talk and I’m still in love with it. Kung pwede lang sa Iloilo na lang ako magtuturo. I love its airport, its food (Aligue rice!) its people, its languages, its culture. Though I admit two visits are probably not enough to give someone an accurate impression of the place. Eitherway, it was another happy experience. Another moment, another memory that will help me through days when I feel burnt-out as a teacher.

I love Iloilo. I love children’s literature. I love teaching.

P.S. Thanks to _geek_ for the cakes, coffee, books and the wonderful conversations! See you soon!

Pagod at Nakalilitong Post

Ika-10 araw ko na ito ng dire-diretsong pagtrarabaho sapagkat nagkataong may camping noong nakaraang weekend.  Ang dami ko pang mga bagay na hindi tapos. 3 deadline na ang hindi ko na-meet–isa sa MA, dalawa sa trabaho. At madalas kapag napapgod ka, may mga sandaling nakalilito  at nakalulungkot.

Nakalilito

Minsan sa tuwing ako’y may mga mungkahing tingin ko’y makabuluhan ngunit hindi nabibigyang pansin o natutupad, nalilito ako kung naaasar ba ako dahil hindi nasunod gusto ko o nalulungkot ako na ako lang ang nakakakita ng mga bagay na batid ko ay ang pinakaangkop sa sitwasyon.

Minsan nalilito rin ako kung bakit may mga pagkakataon na may mga bagay akong napapansin na mali ngunit tila wala ng ibang nakakapansin pa nito.

At sa pagpuna ko ng mga kamaliang ito, minsan nalilito ako kung ma-kontra lamang ako at negatibo o sadyang may pakialam sa mga kaganapan at positibo.

Minsan naman nalilito ako sa mga panahong nais kong manindigan sa tingin kong tama ngunit tila ako lang naman ang nakababatid nito kaya naman nagmumuka lamang akong masungit, mayabang at subersibo.

Nakalulungkot

Sa aking pagwika ng mga saloobin at mungkahi, nakalulungkot na minsan hindi  ito pinakikinggan at hinuhusgahan na agad na tila wala itong ibang kabuluhan kung hindi ang kumontra.

Minsan naman nakalulungkot na pinagtatawanan lang ang aking mga mungkahi na tila ba hindi ko ito pinagisipan at sadyang madaldal lamang ako.

Minsan rin nakalulungkot na hindi marunong makinig ang mga tao.

Minsan nakalulungkot rin na hindi nila napapansin ang aking pakikinig.

Minsan, sa mga binibitiwang salita ng mga tao, hindi ko na alam kung mayabang lang ako, emosyonal at hindi nag-iisip o tunay na ako ay may batid na tama.

At ang pinakamalungkot, minsan walang naglalakas loob manindigan at hamunin ang mga kamaliang nakagisnan

at madalas wala nang tutulong at magtuturo sa iyo sa  kung ano ang totoo.

Nang Mabundol ang Aking Ego

Nabundol ang aking ego.

Kahapon ay enrolment. Muli ko na namang nakaharap ang aking propesor na magaling, halimaw (in a colloquially positive way) at “Siya-na” (as in international credentials). Kulang na lang sabihin sa niya sa akin na pinasa niya ako dahil naawa siya. Pero hindi naman iyon ang sinabi niya. Parang ganito ang kaniyang winika.

I would have had given you a singko (5) if I didn’t see your performance throughout the sem

Sa kasawiang palad, mukhang naawa nga lang siya talaga sa akin. Totoo naman kasi, citations at referencing na lang, hindi ko pa nagawa ng maayos. Kung tutuusin dapat nga namang kabisado ko na ang tamang pagsulat ng papel bilang nasa gradwadong antas na ako ng pag-aaral.

Sa isip ko gusto ko sisihin ang aking nakakapagod na trabaho, ang kolehiyo ng edukasyon na hindi naman talaga ako sinanay sa formal papers dahil halos puro reflections, anecdotes, journals at lesson plans lamang ang pinagawa sa amin, hindi magaling magturo ang aking teacher, at kung anu-ano at sinu-sino pa. Kaya lang wala naman akong karapatan. Hindi na ako bata para magturo at manisi. Kung totoo mang mahirap ang trabaho at kulang ang aking kasanayan, tiyak na may pagkukulang rin naman talaga ako. Sa katunayan, ito nga ang pagkakahati ng karamihan ng oras sa bawat buwan ng buhay ko.

Pansinin ang oras na nagagamit ko sa internet(sa blog at sa mga social networks)at ikumpara sa oras na ginugugol ko sa pag-aaral ng MA at pagtratrabaho. Halos pantay lamang. Hindi na kailangang pang ipaliwanag ang aking kakulangan. Aayusin ko ito. Sisiguraduhin kong mas dadami ang aking pagbabasa, pag-aaral at pagtuturo sa mga susunod na buwan. Pag-aaralan ko ang mga bagay na dapat kong malaman para mas maging isang mahusay na gradwadong mag-aaral at guro. Wala akong ibang kakalabanin kung hindi ang sarili ko lamang.

Kaya ‘to! Babawi ako.

Ano ngayon kung nabundol ang ego ko? Oo medyo masakit pero walang panahon para malungkot at mawalan ng pag-asa sa aking pangarap na maging isang magaling na guro. Kailangan kumilos! 😀

A Teacher’s Plan for the Next School Year

Summer is recharging time for teachers. It is also the time for teachers to rethink and plan classroom setup, strategies and a lot more.So far, these are what I have come up with.

  • Aquarium and terrarium in the classroom
  • more gameboards, blocks/ legos and clay
  • a reading corner
  • guitar and/or piano
  • a secret mailbox where students can put secret things they want me to know

will be updating this as summer comes to an end 🙂