Monthly Archives: January 2015

Thank God for Movies!

Let me start off this ejournal entry with an admission. I’d have to say that, I found some of the information difficult to digest and quite overwhelming. There were times that I had to stop, reread and reassess my strategies on how I should understand the lessons. Then it dawned on me that some of what I have read are of similar plots to the movies that I have watched about elitist societies, poor communities and education.

In reference to the first module, what struck my interest the most was how elitist society can maneuver their way through schools like in the movie Mona Lisa Smile. The movie depicted that people with money, authority and influence can pretty much have their way of affecting how schools/ institutions believe that an educator may or may not be good enough for their children, as in the case of Katherine, the protagonist in the movie. She is a teacher who is not afraid to shake the norms that have been set by this traditional school and instead, challenge young, intelligent women to do more for themselves and not settle for just married life. This notion that women can offer more was, of course, frowned upon by parents who sat on the board of trustees. They believed that the challenge that Katherine posed for their children were simply ludicrous, and for that she was given restrictions. These restrictions did not dampen her spirit though, instead with enough courage to go against societies’ mores, her students finally saw the goodness of her intentions.

I may not have so many years of exposure in the academe but based on real- life stories that I was able to read in the net, I can say that, sadly, others have not learned anything from history since this practice is still prevalent. There still are individuals who are blinded by power and wealth, and instead of using both, for the improvement of the lives of young men and women, they use these resources to take control over them or to advance whatever agenda they have for themselves.

On the other hand, I got to identify the opposite side of the spectrum upon answering a question for the second module. And again, my understanding of that particular question led me to recall another movie. This time, however, it was a poor society that pitched in to make a difference in the lives of young men. These young men were seen as hopeless human beings at first, but because one man ( Ken Carter) started to care, the entire society learned that there was still a “fighting chance” for these young men. That belief blossomed into hope that despite their unfortunate circumstance, there is and will always be opportunities for change especially for those who’d work hard to make it happen.

These movies are both educational and inspirational. They mirror the truth about society– the good, the bad and the ugly. What I take from all these is the thought that despite how situations can be difficult for us sometimes, the belief that my principles about what I need to do for my students should never be compromised and that certain sacrifices for the welfare and well-being of my students will always be worth my time, effort and commitment.

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A Day of Reflection

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I find it very timely that I am reflecting today about what I have learned throughout the many, many years of my existence here on earth. I say timely, because I am writing this entry on the day when the challenge of our very special guest, Pope Francis, is for us to reflect on how we have lived, and continue to live our lives– whether or not we have looked at the needs of our poor brothers and sisters in God.

Having said this, I cannot help but think that perhaps, one of the reasons why I contemplate on the importance of these new lessons today, is that I needed to have a better understanding of the kind of teacher I want to become. Perhaps, being able to provide new things, ideas, insights to my future students is not enough to be recognized as an effective teacher. Instead, the realization that more and more people need care, attention, opportunities, trust, patience and understanding, is the real message of these lessons and that I must not be complacent with the things that I know now but to challenge myself even further to develop into a “teacher” who would give as much importance to the well- being of her students as that of their intellectual gains. Someone who will not give up when faced with difficulties in teaching situations or difficulties with her students. Someone who will promote values and ideologies but will allow her students to have a mind of their own. Someone who will give students opportunities to try and succeed and not dominate the entire learning experience just because she can. And, someone who will always be mindful that she has been called to play a role that will make a difference in the lives of others whom she would teach.

Time- Management: My Great Nemesis

Like many of us, I, too am a person who wears different hats. I am a mother, a wife, a daughter, a sister, a friend and the list goes on. So, it goes without saying that I play different roles on a daily basis and together with those roles are the different expectations of me.

I have to admit that I have known myself to be good at time management until I was proven wrong twice today. Of course, it came as a shocker because I have always thought that since I am able to accomplish things on time, it is tantamount to doing things the right way. Regardless of the anxiety that the “process of finishing up” sometimes brings.

After accomplishing two of the suggested surveys, (http://universitycollege.illinoisstate.edu/downloads/Time%20Management%20Skills%20Test.pdf and http://sarc.sdes.ucf.edu/form-studyskills), I was made aware that I still have a few more missteps when it comes to managing my time. These missteps, however, are things that I can definitely work on and should not in any way hinder me from achieving the goals that I have set for myself. If anything, the realization that I should 1) learn to delegate responsibilities, 2) be able to say “no” and 3) give up total control when necessary are a few pointers that I believe will direct me to achieving those goals. And, with the guidance and support from both my peers and FIC, I am sure that the only direction I am headed to is FORWARD.

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