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Behind The Mask

Maribel Ranjo Serafica – Arellano

· Volume I Issue III

Unwanted… Loathe… Uncertain…

For 39 years of existence nurtured by parents who are both teachers, the school is my second home and my home is my second school. Every time I wake up, clothes for school patiently wait for me to wear, backpack to be hung on my shoulder and books bound to be read. ‘Twas a daily routine! No new thing. No new view. No new friends. No new faces. I feel a small part inside me unwanting the regular scene of school and school at home.

I clearly remember, though, that my aspiration was not to become a teacher. As a kid, armies of emotions were raging inside me when my parents enrolled me in the college of education. Why? Of all courses I am in the profession I am unwanting? I stared at my mother’s eyes. Saddened. Frowned. I demanded answers but all I saw were smiles.

The scene of school seems forever. I am always preoccupied of how to make every students learn. I am worried of how to please my colleagues. I feel tired of routine works. The thought of well-prepared daily lesson logs there and detailed lesson plans here makes me sick. Careful analysis of strategies to be employed before and evaluation of students’ performance after slowly kill my being.

Uncertain of what may the future hold and store for me then, but now I am certain of the position I do have. Thus, I have no choice but not to reject this circumstance and unlearn to hate my status. Consequently, I have to live to where and who I am now. This moment calls for uncovering and disclosing the essence of my existence.

I may have not given the chance to pursue my old time dream but I still subscribe to this thought that it is undoubtedly nice also to reflect on what really is the essence of my mission. As an educator I can do much for this mission to be materialized, one of the things that I have to accomplish is to be near my students and colleagues, close enough to be touched and to be felt. I must immerse myself into their world to create home inside the school. I should not appear so tall that they can find difficulty in reaching me. I should not appear as an unreachable giant; rather I should stand as dwarf, enough to be seen, to be touched but not to be stepped on. Lowering my level yields beneficial results. Through this, I get to know my students and colleagues better, be more aware of their needs, and understand their behavior within and outside the school. Thus, the learners, colleagues, and I know how to get along with one another properly, what come next are fruitful interaction, very smooth relationship, and an inner satisfaction.

Being a teacher, then, is founded on respect for the teaching profession; love for the students and colleagues in spite and despite of themselves; recognition that not everybody is parallel to one another; knowledge that I must help each client under my charge to become what they want to, achieve his highest possible academic, emotional, and productive potential; and finally, awareness that not all is turned on by education and that I must try in some way to reach them.

I believe then that doing these bring the community together to share leadership in many different avenues at the same time confirm the thought of Tom Peters’ adage that leaders don’t create followers, they create more leaders.

With this, I can now say, “I may not have dreamt to become a teacher but I am privileged I have become one. And because I am now a teacher, I will live as a teacher until I die!”