Monday, April 19, 2021

Quote #67

"The world is a vast battleground for memes." - Klinsman Hinjaya
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What Does It Mean To Be a Teacher?

This is a vitally important question for some of the billions of earthlings to answer – and that fraction includes me, a speck of cosmic dust which happens to be inhabiting the most populated island of the Indonesian archipelago. I have worked as a teacher of English, my most loved language of all, for over seven years and this has inevitably made me ponder and reflect, from time to time, on the role that I have been trusted to take. Teaching is my bread and butter, but, to me, it goes far beyond that. I wholeheartedly believe that being a teacher means much, much more than earning money to get by in life. The future of the planet very much depends on our collective action and in order to ensure the continuity of its existence and the advancement & protection of its welfare, what we sorely need are who I would call real teachers: those who put their best effort into enlightening the minds of the next generation for the common good – for all of us. Seen from this point of view, teachers are really saviors of the world. So, what does it mean to be a teacher? What things does it involve? I reckon the following elements are essential to making a real teacher:

1. Educator

Needless to say, this quality is indispensable to being a teacher. Teachers are meant to educate, and this requires them to possess a sufficient amount of knowledge or skill to diffuse to or instill in the students. A teacher who lacks expertise in their respective area simply will not make a significant impact, if any, on their students' lives. It is important to underline that teachers must strive to combat false information and that they also need to be highly creative to make sure that their delivery of a particular subject is effectively accomplished.

2. Motivator

Let's face it: Students can feel down and discouraged – well, they are human beings, aren't they? They may be having a serious family problem, or instead they may have been stuck on a math problem for long. Such situations can hurl them to the depths of despair; and this is when the subrole of a motivator comes into play. A teacher should be able to sympathize with and motivate their students to achieve their aims, making them rise and directing them to meeting their challenges. What is worse than seeing someone's potential left unfulfilled?

3. Example Setter

Teachers have to be role models for their students. Why so? Well, it is simply because students tend to imitate their teachers, just as kids do their parents. If a teacher tells their students to be punctual, but they themselves always arrive late, would that convince the students to be disciplined? If you are an English teacher, but you do not care about, say, capitalization when writing country or city names, don't you think your students would be slovenly too? Setting an example is a very powerful way to drive students to success in learning.

4. Inspirator

Setting an example is a must, but I think a teacher needs to go the extra mile. Be an inspiration to your students! There are endless things a teacher can do to launch their students to heights of excitement on their learning journeys. For example, if you are a music teacher, you might want to record videos of you showing off your brilliant skill at playing a musical instrument and posting them to social media so that the general public can enjoy it. This will get your students psyched about the performance and, hopefully, wanting to do such inspirational things themselves.

5. Friend

It is probably true that there is often an invisible but discernible gap between teachers and students. It is as if students are destined to respect their teachers from afar and their teachers are "untouchable", exclusively sitting on their "thrones". Although I agree that there should be limits to how teachers and students interact, developing a rapport with students is really important as it can enhance their learning experiences by leaps and bounds. As mentioned before, students are humans, so being able to, for example, share with their teachers would be greatly beneficial.

6. Learner

Finally, a teacher, just like everybody else, is essentially a learner. This certainly applies to the knowledge or skill in their respective field – for instance, an English teacher must keep abreast of the latest development in the language (new vocabulary, etc.). However, it can be extended into such areas as understanding the psychology of the students and new technology that can be utilized to make learning more fun and effective. Teachers need to always update their armaments to ensure that their students experience learning in the best way possible.

Thank you so much for reading up to this point! I hope this article is useful for fellow teachers and those considering entering the profession. Feel free to leave any comments below! πŸ˜Š

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Sunday, April 11, 2021

Quote #66

"Never ever will denial resolve a problem. Humbly locate the root and pluck it with your greatest force." - Klinsman Hinjaya
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Friday, April 2, 2021

You're Roarsome – Book Review

You're Roarsome

It was serendipity that ultimately united me with this mini-book. I don't recall the details (although my dinosaurian passion must have been the trigger) but I am extremely glad that I ordered this from one of the most reliable bookstores on the planet: Book Depository. Now, what can this cute volume do to your life?

Let's be honest: we are fragile creatures. I reckon no-one in this world can say they are on cloud nine at all times, bearing no burden whatsoever. While it is true that we are physically built, we have psychology, an aspect that affects much of our own lives. I think it is natural for us to sometimes feel depressed or even down in the dumps. This is where You're Roarsome, published by Summersdale, comes into play.

You're Roarsome is a book chock-full of inspiring, motivating, and uplifting quotes AND dinosaur-related puns which are aimed to exert the same effect on its readers. This is a light book that you can read literally in a day (or an hour), but believe me, it is capable of making a profound impact on your life. The quotes are taken from various people, all of whom I believe are famous figures although I am familiar with only probably about 30% of them. The roster displays names such as Taylor Swift, Neil Gaiman, Hellen Keller, Theodore Roosevelt, Michelle Obama, and Bruce Lee. I found the quotes powerful and moving, boosting my self-confidence, brightening my mood, and encouraging me to be more of me and move forward. The wordplay is also deliciously witty and will surely raise beatific smiles for the readers. If you are in low spirits and need an injection of encouragement, I highly recommend reading You're Roarsome: it will make you believe in yourself more ('cause you are awesome!) and get you ready for what lies ahead in your life.

Note that it is best to treat this book as a self-development book rather than a science book. For example, it mistakenly categorizes a pterosaur as a dinosaur – Pterosauria and Dinosauria are two separate groups of animals. Other than improving its scientific accuracy, it would be wonderful to have numbered pages so that readers can easily find what they want.

Have you read You're Roarsome? What do you think of this book? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!
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Sunday, March 28, 2021

The Last Rhyme

Tormented, screeching at my nadir
My soul has crumbled now that you are not here
Where is your genuine warmth, dear?
Nor your velvet voice I can hear

This emptiness strangles my very life, helplessly suffocating
This loneliness rends it into millions, mindlessly floating
Can I still impart unalloyed happiness?
Or would it be transmuted into unutterable sadness?

Please gaze at me one more time
And hearken to this last rhyme
If you think it is merely a dime
Just make that parting chime

The creation of this poem was inspired by Kai Bu Liao Kou (開不了口) by Jay Chou.
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Wednesday, March 24, 2021