This is written by MM, an eleventh grade student who is planning on studying in Japan in the near future, and is in her second year of studying Japanese at our local community college. She also plans to be the first Guatemalan-American astronaut.
Dear Teachers and Students,
How do you value and work with education? We all know school is: not easy, it’s not a “piece of cake”, but anything is possible with hard work. It’s not really the teacher’s responsibility to force the students to come to school; that’s why we have in the U.S the opportunities, in so many possible ways. The teachers and school staff are all here to do what they can do. I am thankful to all of the educators of each school for helping us out. Like my mom said, the educators of each school take each parent’s place to teach their children for eight hours in school!
Teachers: how do you TEACH? How do you VALUE education? It would also be interesting if schools did not use just textbooks but also taught us about our own history and about the world around us. For me, being taught both traditionally and nontraditionally opens my mind when I learn, and I think it can open both students and the educators’ mind.
Also, educators need to learn how to understand what each student needs. I know not every educator cares about the students, so maybe that’s something the school should think about because we all need someone to listen and care about us sometimes, no matter how hard-headed we are. Please pay attention carefully when we are being annoyed or bothered by someone else, and it take into account whether or not to make it public. From elementary until the end of middle school I was bullied for my appearance and personality. I never said anything about it because I was too shy and didn’t want to get anyone involved in any of my problems. I would like to have told someone about it, but it needed to be a teacher that I could trust very much and would give me advice on how to stop the students from bothering me. This is why, educators, you should pay attention and learn from your students who they are and how you can help them depending if they’re extroverts or introverts.
Also, as an introvert, I just don’t like doing group activities in school or any public speaking or presentations. I am too shy to do them. This is what I’m wondering, and I really want to know: why do we need to do these activities with groups, if some of us are just too shy about it or really just don’t want to do them? I don’t hate them, but I just don’t gain any learning in group activities.
Students: How do you VALUE and USE your education? Other than my negative experience, I had always a happy school life. I was always happy doing my work and learning, mostly math! I have had great times when my classmates and I went to field trips from just going to a local park for a picnic to going camping for three days. I always learned over the years to enjoy school now, because education is the greatest opportunity given to us
Students: love each other, respect each other, be who you are, and work on understanding what you need and what your classmates need. Enjoy school and be observant and learn. It is very important to keep this in mind; think before you act and speak. Take all opportunities given to you and help each other out. And work hard for what YOU want!
In many countries, such as my home country, Guatemala, education is hard to find. You need to pay for almost every school, and if you want to go to a great school, you need to pay even more money. There aren’t that many neighborhood schools, and many students have to travel up to two hours to get to school. Furthermore, most students have to work with their parents for a living. But no matter what, these students are very committed to their education because having an education is their greatest wish. This is the same in any many other countries beside the U.S. So students, understand that education is a privilege and we should take advantage of any school opportunities.
Finally, I have a message for those people who fund education: Why is higher education getting more expensive every year? Don’t you want a great education for each student? And how can you give an affordable, or, even better, a free college education? Think about it: we all deserve an education, no matter who we are.
So, tell me, teachers and staff of schools: what is your opinion and how can you make a difference? Students, how can you make a difference for school to be better place for you? I want people in schools to make school a great learning and teaching place. Yes, there will be sometimes challenges, but challenges are part of life, but we’ll learn from them and become stronger. Education is a blessing and an opportunity given to us. Thank those who help us. Enjoy each moment of life! And work hard for what you want! Each of you who is reading this letter: what do you wish for our education’s future?