A parent once approached me, (maybe because I’m a teacher also)). She asked my opinion regarding an important issue that concerns her 6 year old boy who at present is enrolled in a public elementary school- grade one. She receives so much complain from this teacher regarding his son’s misbehavior in class. The parent is also being told that her son couldn’t follow instructions right away, always teases his classmates and a lot more. The parent couldn’t believe the teacher knowing how she has reared her son, so behave and so refined. The family is alarmed cause they consider the 6 year old boy as the apple of their eyes being the only son, only nephew, only one. They have asked the previous teachers in a pre-elementary classes where the child was previously enrolled, so happened that it was a private institution. Accordingly, that child behaved so well in class during kinder, can follow and do the activities and never been engaged in a quarrel even in minor arguments that usually occurred among young boys. Where was then the problem? With in home?? The parent disagreed, the child is well loved, well cared and receives so much attention at home, yet he’s not that spoiled. As testified by his previous mentors, the child is really that behaved in class. They never even had a hard time with this child.

          Days passed, and they have observed how the child lost his interest in school. Every time, the parent leaves her son in class, there is an expression in his face as if telling his mother not to leave him around. Every morning when he’s been asked to prepare for school, there is always an abruptness in his actions as if he doesn’t like to go to school. What went wrong? Who should be blame?  This time, the parents tried to figure out the reasons behind. And they have discovered a lot of things that somehow affect their child’s behavior. Every morning, it was found out that the teacher starts her lessons with a lot of …. P…I’s ( putang ina ), a loud voice is her motivation, and lot of blah…blah..blah are her lessons proper. She pays much attention on her pupils “kakulitan” rather than how to encourage them to listen with what she’s teaching. They have also realized that she comes to class almost late and that not that well prepared which evidently seen how unstructured her lessons are. Lately, they discovered also that same problem occurred to other pupils; in fact a lot of parents are telling the same story. One day, the parent approached the teacher regarding the problem that bothered her. Instead of coming up with a smooth exchange of talks….it turned into an argument. From then on, the child takes different seats- almost no permanent seat every week. The worst was when he was seen sitting in front of a garbage can. The parents come with an idea of transferring their child to another grade one class with in the same school. But then, there was a refusal from the concerned.

            Classes are almost on its second month and the same problem bothered the parents. So their last option is to transfer their child to another school, with a different teacher. The parents requested the new teacher to observe whether their son really misbehaves or undisciplined in class. They opened up the matter with out leaving any detail.

            Two days after being transferred to another school, the parents got surprised, their child had a lot of stories to tell – the activity they did that day; the name of the group he belongs; the prices their team got after winning the contest; the Big and small letter S etc. This time, it is observed that their child likes the learning environment he’s in now. He takes a bath without being told; does his assignment by himself; regularly organizes his school things; and most importantly, there is such a big and sweet smile every time his mother leaves him in their classroom—a sign that it will be okey for he is in good hands. What a big change— a change of environment makes a big difference on their child’s perspectives towards schooling.  But, is it really the environment or the teacher’s approach?

        To make the story short, based on the observations and other’s experiences; it is the teacher that made the child behaved that well and reacted that way. It was the teacher that made the child disliked the school at first with all those bad words that her mouth uttered almost every minute of the day. It was her loud voice that made the child lost his interest.

        Now that their child is back to what he used to be, jolly, active, behave, the parents feel no regrets—For them, it was the right decision that they have made. Pulling out their child from that learning environment that offers nothing except a lot of undesirable experiences. After all, it’s supposed to be their child’s first hand experiences under formal education. And Grade One Teachers should be the most remembered teachers since they will be the first hands that will mold the child’s hearts and mind.

By: EDGARDO L. DESTREZA – Daan Pare Elementary Schhol

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