Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Of Education

Today the Mentari kids are sitting for their UPSR exam, and I’m feeling nervous about it. Perhaps the period of nine months being with the kids makes me feel this way..and I still remember on last Sunday, when we had our berbuka puasa session with the kids and their parents, they were holding my hands for like 5 minutes and kept on asking me to pray for them.."cikgu doakan saya tau.."..of course I will...

So what's next?

The project will proceed as usual, we'll be focusing on year 4 and 5 students while year 6 students will be having a long break before they get to form 1.but the good news is, they still wanted to come to class even after the UPSR exam. For me, it is a positive sign that, for them, coming to class is not just about learning academic subjects and sitting for examination.

The purpose of education is beyond excellent grades and handsome paycheck. But to have these have always been a consolation to one's hard work to strive for the best, the tangible aspect of formal education. (Well, to see how proud your parents are every time you show them your exam result has always been a good point considering the fact that sometimes, in the future, you might still have to ask for some funding from them the moment you realize your bank account is in deficit!)

For me, the most important aspect of education is the attainment of a certain degree of liberation. To liberate one self from ignorance and vices in finding the purpose of our very own creation as human beings, to continue doing the right thing, no matter how small the thing is. It’s an ongoing process that we have to learn and teach every now and then, particularly when we forget that there are always other people around us, not as fortunate as we are, waiting for some shoulders to cry on.

I would like to share Aristotle's idea on education that is rather intriguing:

"…our thinking and practice as educators must be infused with a clear philosophy of life. There has to be a deep concern for the ethical and political. We have continually to ask what makes for human flourishing? From this we should act to work for that which is good or 'right', rather than that which is merely 'correct'…”

And the plans/areas to focus on that we have in mind for the kids are:-

1) gender relations
2) multi-racial relations
3) good manners

I hope things will be able to be carried out according to plans. InsyaAllah.more volunteers are welcome to join this project:P

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