It's been so long - I'm sorry :(

Saving Angel
Posted April 6, 2015 from Canada
bake sale table - #bakeforchange
bake sale table - #bakeforchange (1/2)

It’s been so long since I’ve last written a post about anything and I feel like I owe it to my world pulse family to share why I’ve been so M.I.A. For the past year and half I’ve been in school, completing my Masters of Science in Education and teaching certification. It’s been such a crazy year educationally but it has been an even more inspiring and deeply motivating year for me. Whether I was the student in class or the teacher at the front of the class, I not only learned something about myself, but I also learned a whole lot about my students – who I’m proud to call my kids. I’ve seen firsthand the struggles that children in the slums go through each day, and I’ve also seen the light at the end of the tunnel for children who feel like they have no hope. I’ve seen my kids smile out of joy because each day is such an amazing learning experience for them, and I’ve also seen them frustrated and angry because they feel like they’re incapable of learning. Some of these students who come from low socioeconomic statuses feel like they’re in a socially-helpless situation, while some students fight each day to defy those very characteristics, to make a better life for themselves. Some of these students have a wide range of disabilities – everything from ADHD, autism, physical disabilities, TBI to behavioural issues – and boy did I learn a lot from working with these kids. I learned how to be a better teacher, a better student and most importantly a better person.

I learned more from teaching these kids than from being in the classrooms as a student because I was faced with the challenges each day of trying to help these kids move past their own social, emotional and personal difficulties. I realised that education is the one gift that can save all of these children, and as teachers we owe it to them to do our best and to give them their one chance.

I know it’s difficult to make a change in every child’s life especially considering that I spent so little time with them all, but I’d like to think that I tried my best to open their eyes to what’s going on around them and give them the chance to make a difference in their own lives. Having said that, I want to share with you all some of the accomplishments that I made throughout my teaching placements.

At one of the schools I taught at, we did a bake for change event for the Free the Children Organization. All of the grade 7 and 8 classes came together to bake cookies, muffins, cupcakes, cakes, etc. to sell to the rest of the school in hopes of raising money for the Org. We also held a school dance where they charged $1 for admission. In the end we raised nearly $600.00 all of which went to the Free the Children organization. Everything from the planning process to the event decorations to the food preparation was such an eye opening experience for the kids. They learned about the devastating conditions that so many children worldwide were living in, and they decided that they wanted to do something about it. There were moments of joy when we realised how much we raised but there were also moments of sadness when we talked about the inequality, discrimination, poverty, etc. that so many children dealt with each day.

On another occasion, I had the students create a written piece (poem/speech) highlighting a social issue of their choice during Remembrance Day. These children were given the opportunity to research a social issue of their choice – whether it was bullying, child labour/slavery, feticide, sexual abuse, discrimination, etc. – and express their feelings about the topic in their own words. For me this was one of the most moving and powerful experiences that I have ever gone through in my life. These children poured their hearts out on paper as they spoke about these social issues in hopes of raising awareness. We plastered some of their pieces around the school so that other teachers, parents/guardians and students could read and learn about these social issues – in hopes of having them raise awareness as well. In the end we forever changed lives as they became exposed to a world that was for so long unknown to them.

Also on several occasions, I talked about how they could use social media positively to raise awareness and to learn more about these social issues. They learned about how they can put an end to things like cyber bullying with just one click by reporting a user’s comment or by telling an adult about an incident online. We’re in an era where our children are governed by the pages of the internet and we owe it to them to help them learn how to use it in a productive and positive manner. We have to accept that there’s no way to get around their involvement and their use of the internet, so what better way than to show them how they can have fun but be safe and respectful at the same time.

In the end, these are just some of the ways in which I tried to use my teaching as a way to educate my kids and raise awareness about issues that impact them in so many ways. I wish I had more time to overcome more mountains – but with the end of my program I realised that this is just the beginning of my journey as an educator and activist. From here on out my journey to overcome many more mountains and to save angels begins; and I can’t do any of this without your support. So please, my world pulse family, help me make a difference by sharing your words of wisdom and support, by sharing your thoughts and dreams and by raising awareness with those around you – wherever you are.

Much love and respect xoxox.

Comments 4

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Damilola Fasoranti
Apr 07, 2015
Apr 07, 2015

You are welcome back Saving Angels,

It is so great to hear about your exploits and the fact that you are touching lives in a remarkable way.

Your experience with these kids touch me so deeply and I can only imagine the fire of greatness that you have caused to burn.

'Education is the one gift that can save all of these children...' that is such a powerful line and we hope that we as teachers will give to our students this one chance.

I will really be glad to hear more of your work in this direction because I have an education project for steeet kids along this path.

If I may ask, do you have any means of checking back on these children to know how they are thriving?

Saving Angel
Apr 08, 2015
Apr 08, 2015

Dear Fasoranti! First of all I want to say thank you for taking the time to read my post - I truly appreciate it! Thank you for sharing your kind words of support and appreciation towards my small efforts. I will definitely be sharing more information about my future endeavours with the children as I have many hopes and many plans to see them succeed in these areas of self and mutual respect for everyone regardless of their nationality, religion or opinions. My dad always says that education is the one thing that will stay with us forever even when everything else around us falters.

It’s funny that you ask this question Fasoranti because I do stay in touch with the students and the staff at those schools. In fact, I went to see my kids today and they were talking about some of the social issues that I discussed with them. I was so glad to hear one of my students say “Hey Miss. Sinanan we’re talking about social issues that you taught us about last year”. It is hard to describe those feelings of acceptance and fulfillment – even more so when they all got up to give me a hug and tell me that they miss having me as a teacher in their class.

Please stay in touch Fasoranti as I’d love to share some more stories with you. Much respect and appreciation. 

Terry Mullins
Apr 07, 2015
Apr 07, 2015

Hello Saving Angel...and Welcome Back!

No apologies are necessary and I am so happy you have shared with the World Pulse online community the work you have been doing this past year and a half.

It is no small thing to take on the role of "teacher". It is so evident in your post that you cared deeply about each and every child that came into your life. I would venture to say that you have, indeed, made a difference in each of their lives by the simple fact that you cared and you showed it in a thousand ways - some small, some large, some more memorable than others. I love your story of "Remembrance Day"...I firmly believe each one of those children has been irrevocably changed for the better because of you and what you all did, together! What a lovely and deeply moving experience.

I wish you the best of everything as you start this next chapter of your life. Please keep sharing your journey with us...we are walking the path with you in spirit!

In love and peace,

Terry Mullins

Saving Angel
Apr 08, 2015
Apr 08, 2015

Dear Terry! I just want to say thank you so much for sharing your words of support and appreciation! I do care very deeply about these children. I think they are the potential for the future and if we can educate them to the best of our ability then we openly give them the opportunity to succeed. For me Terry, it was always the teachers who took the extra effort or showed the extra care and support that made me feel like I could be anything that I want to be. I want to do the same for these children – I want them to feel like they are capable of being whoever they want to be – even if that means superheroes in their own way!

The Remembrance day assignment was definitely one that I will always cherish and hope to use in the future with more of my students! Thank you so much for showing your appreciation and support for all of my efforts. Also, thank you for showering your blessings of support and courage for my future endeavours. I hope to stay in touch with you as I would love to share many more stories with you. Much love and respect, Saving Angel.