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Learning From My Educational Experiences In Jamaica: Meaningful Learning Takes Place In Motivated Children

2502 words - 10 pages

I was born in the country of Jamaica and raised with two brothers and one sister but I migrated to the United States in 1988. In Jamaica no matter how poor or rich you are education was the tool out of any circumstances. As I was born in a poor family my mother and father believed that their children had to get an education for upward mobility. As soon as we were potty trained, and able to walk, all their children were sent off to Basic or Infant School. This was the practice in Jamaica ranging from ages two through six. My mother often reminded me of how I cried the first day of school. Up to this day, I pretend not to remember but I can still remember clinging to my mother’s legs not wanting her to leave me, or could it be that I remember because the story was told so many times. Crying and not wanting to go to school took root but everything else in Basic School is a blur. As I grew and moved out of Basic School, I too saw others starting their education the same age I did. The curriculum in Basic School consists of learning the alphabet, how to count as well as numerous songs and nursery rhymes. Learning the alphabet was critical because it was believed that one must know the alphabet well in order to learn to read.
My education continued in Jamaica up until I graduated from Secondary School in 1985. Third grade of Primary School is very vivid. Primary School is grade one through six. Since my parents were not equipped to teach us at home, I realized the importance of a formal education. Our parents made it clear to us that it was a privilege to get an education and we were to conduct ourselves as such. A teacher’s educational philosophy is a very vital component in guiding children along the pathway of enlightment. It is my belief that all children can learn and deserve a well rounded education. This should include all aspect of learning. Real life situations should also be incorporated into the learning experience. By doing this, children will be exposed to cultural experiences that they would otherwise not be opened to. Children should not sit in the classrooms all year; they should be allowed to fully discover themselves while benefiting from real life situations. These outdoor trips and hands on experiences will greatly enrich the learning experience. Education should begin at an early age, be constructive and consistent.
Teachers were feared and at the same time held in high esteem and considered gods. Gods in the sense that they were our superiors and approaching them had to be done in utmost respect. My third grade teacher, Mrs. Stewart, took her job seriously but did not understand that each child learn differently and at different pace. When a skill was taught in class it was understood that the entire class learn that skill at the same rate. When I was in the third grade, my teacher Mrs. Stewart instructed us to write about out plans for the upcoming summer vacation. I had no problems...

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