By: Adrian Pantonial
-Written last June 7, 2009-
“Only a life lived for others is a life worthwhile.”-Albert Einstein
I wanted to be a Teacher during my elementary years but that changed when I reached high school because I didn’t want to be left behind while my students move on to live their lives outside school after graduation. No doubt, teaching is a noble vocation but I felt like I’m called to do something else.
When I began attending church in Community Baptist Church (CBC) Cogeo Antipolo back in January ’09 [up to yesterday-07Jun09], I felt a great burden to address the need for English Literacy so I volunteered to conduct an English Workshop back in May for current students (beginning from 13 years old above), out-of-school youth, Single professionals and even parents who are interested.
It was a huge challenge for me conceptualizing the rules of the classroom and the learning modules that would best fit this mixture of people groups and how to bring out the best in each student. I also had to think of ways to keep them interested like coming up with ice breaker games (with “sweet prizes”) as well as teach English in “Tagalog” whenever necessary so they could “really” appreciate and learn well. The greater challenge for me was the sacrificed Saturday-Sunday rests which I could’ve spent more on having quality time with family, doing my weekly laundry (LOL!), reading and/or taking photos.
Teaching two batches of English Workshop (with eight sessions each, two hours per session) took me out of my comfort zone again after putting in a lot of effort, time, energy and some money. It’s all worthwhile though as I ended up fulfilled because God’s grace was there to help me finish what I began and also learned a few significant life lessons from my students.
I’m both grateful and happy knowing that somehow, in my own little way, (even with my sketchy life, flaws and all) I was given this chance to help these people have a better chance to quality life from the lessons that they’ve learned in my class.