My Australia Awards Story - Teachers Special: Alex Geronimo
To celebrate the culmination of National Teachers’ Month (4 Sept – 4 October) and World Teachers’ Day on 5 October, Australia Awards Philippines will feature three of its teacher-scholars who are making a difference in their communities through their Australian education. Know more about our educators, and their hopes and inspirations in the following multi-part interview piece for the “My Australia Awards Story”.
What inspired you to become a teacher?
My desire to become an agent of change in the lives of every learner was my ultimate inspiration in becoming a teacher. I firmly believe that the youth is the hope of the fatherland and that they will be performing indispensable and intricate tasks in the future. This is why it is very important to arm them with necessary skills and positive attitudes through proper education. The teaching profession is not just about teaching the learners to pass examinations. It is much deeper---it is about touching and making a difference in students’ lives.
How did your Australian education and your experiences in Australia shape the way you teach today?
To be immersed in the Australian education system is undeniably a huge professional opportunity and advancement in a teacher's career. Because of this opportunity, I realised that the culture of competition among learners inside the classroom must be eradicated. Learning must be done in a collaborative nature by the students and must be well facilitated by the teacher. I also learned that teacher must be leaders not only inside the classroom but in the wider community as well. Thus, teachers must be supported and empowered by the barangay leaders to innovate and undertake projects that are beneficial to the public.
Finally, because of Australia’s multiculturalism, I got to meet friends from other countries and learned their cultures. This is I think one of the most vital experience I have had in my stay in Australia aside from my university education. This experience and understanding of other cultures is something that I can share with fellow educators and learners in the Philippines.
What are your dreams and hopes for Filipino students and the education sector in the Philippines?
As a Mathematics teacher, my ultimate dream is to foster in all Filipino students the love and appreciation for Mathematics. I want to remove their anxieties and other negative notions towards the subject by introducing different innovative and styles of teaching Maths.
In a broader perspective, I hope that the education sector will work harder to make quality education accessible to every Filipino, especially the poor and the indigenous people living in far-flung areas. If this will happen, I am very optimistic that the Philippines will become at par with other countries in terms of economic wealth.
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