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[Y-SPACE] The path less travelled

By Marie Madeleine Arigore

To teach is to touch lives. Being a young teacher is such a roller coaster ride. For some days, it is fun while for some, it is not, but at the end of the day, it is always worth the ride. I remember when I was still applying for college, it wasn’t my dream to be one. In fact, I wanted to pursue a degree in Fine Arts but I realized when I wasn’t accepted in UP, maybe I wasn’t fit for it. Disheartened by that, I put education as my course in Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila not really knowing where it would lead me in the future. I enjoyed my course and time flew by so fast without realizing I am about to graduate.

Upon graduation, that same year of 2014, I was hired. At first, I thought teaching is just delivering your lesson plan and accomplishing your task for the day. But later on, as the school days go and as I get to know my students, it started to get personal. Every day becomes a new adventure to take. A new episode of comedy, drama and action in class. Most of the time, we had fun. My students and I enjoyed every bit of our class despite them having some difficulties in my subject. That for me is a challenge and an opportunity to see forth what I can do. In my first year of teaching, it was so memorable. I learned a few lessons and tricks that became very handy as I teach the next school year. My students inspired me a lot to do a better job. I stayed another year in that same school before I went to my next school. I had a better opportunity there and as I always say, never be afraid to take risks. Whatever will happen next, it’s either you win or you learn.

In my second school, I learned more about classroom management and spiritual growth. I have developed magis - to do more than what you’re expected to do. Living as an educator and a formator, I tried to exemplify magis in all that I do. My students, as well as the community I am in, helped me to be a much better teacher and be more grateful for every little thing around me. I have become more patient, understanding, and compassionate towards others, my students and myself. I become more generous in giving. It wasn’t easy and it didn’t happen overnight. Just like everything else, it is a process. I tried my best every day even if it’s not the best moment every day.

However, teaching is not an easy job. In fact, it is not financially rewarding given the volume of work and multiple roles you ought to take. But what sets this profession apart is the fulfillment it gives me when my students go back to me to show appreciation in even the slightest and littlest of things. Children are the most genuine and most grateful creatures I’ve come across with. Nothing beats a small note you’ll randomly find inside the pile of your papers saying thank you in all that I do or a warm hug when they see you or maybe a simple smile that will surely brighten your day. I’d like to think that all my efforts are being paid through their progress and these small deeds especially when they ace their tests and quizzes too. Teachers became part of every student, they make or break them and as for me, I always wanted to leave a positive mark. I always pray that all my students who underwent my supervision succeed in life. I am always rooting for all of them, silently in my prayers and sometimes, if I can, in action. I wanted them to pass that ripple of kindness too, I am exhibiting it, one student at a time. So, here I am, in my 6th year of teaching. Still hopeful that despite the challenges, many would still take this path less travelled.

Madel Arigore is a graduate of Bachelor of Secondary Education Major in English at Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila last 2014. She has been teaching for 6 years now. Currently she is a freelance editor and online academic tutor. As a life long learner, she believes that there is a lot of things you can learn inside and outside of the classroom. Never limit yourself. Even the sky is not the limit. Always be inspired to share kindness and witness its ripple of effects in any way or another.

YSPACE is a platform open for young writers to contribute their worth-sharing thoughts and stories to the world. It is a space for young people and by the young people which aims to promote a strong sense of empowerment and inspiration to young Filipinos.

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