Guidance, as defined by the Scribner-Bantam English dictionary, is the act of guiding, giving direction and supervision, as well as providing counseling service for the students. Guidance may essentially be given anytime, anywhere, and by anyone. Why is guidance necessary? Why is there a need for guidance and counseling to be given?

Guidance and counseling, to be effective, must be based from human needs and desires. It is for this reason why most of the time, a teacher is a guidance counselor as well. Guidance counseling requires one to practice his or her ability in human relations and interaction. It has been mandated by law that part of the duties of all schools and other educational agencies in the Philippines is to guide the children to live a moral life, guided by faith in God and love for fellowmen, irrespective of creed, color and race. On top of being able to read and listen with understanding, to speak and write intelligently, and to think and act wisely on solving the problems of daily life, the teacher who effectively guides students will also take it upon themselves to assist the youth in carrying on a healthful living in a wholesome environment in order to be both physically strong and fit to meet the requirements of a useful life.

The above mentioned objectives are just some guidelines that are attainable by teaching and developing skills in the various learning areas, based on the curriculum being offered by the school or other educational institution. Guidance, therefore, is basically a continuous process whose chief concern is the development of the individual, seeking to help students in attaining a clearer understanding of themselves and the world in which they live while at the same time developing within the child the sense of initiative, responsibility, self-understanding and self-direction.

Guidance counseling is therefore a challenge to each of us who have sworn under the oath of being professional teachers. Let us be reminded that guidance and counseling is for all students – not merely for the so-called problem, “special” or “maladjusted” students. Guidance and counseling is concerned with the students’ efforts, attitudes and will to succeed.

We are our brother’s keeper. A smile, a word of encouragement, a book or an article we have read, a chance meeting with a friend, an older person or even a complete stranger, could be a determining factor in improving our life, the life of others, and eventually, the world we live in. We, teachers, could definitely make a difference.

By: Mrs. Julie E. Esteban-Dangan | Maria Montessori School

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