I was and am still blessed with many weak and naughty children when teaching, tutoring and coaching all these years.
At first, l felt frustrated to find the school giving me all weak classes to mother them. It was hard and exhausting, even heart -breaking. I was drained so l left after some years. I thought I was a failure because l could not see any results but disappointment and hurtful words!
I took up home tuition to keep up with teaching. Children who were academically weak came because someone told them l could take very weak ones. It was really difficult to teach. I spent a lot of my time teaching, listening, laughing. Some parents thought I was wasting time and others cooperated with me so that the children could gain trust in me and in themselves. It was not me alone but along the way of their studies, they met someone who believed in them and helped them to believe in themselves.
Years went by and l was surprised to find these naughty students still remembered me and sweetly called me. They even treated me at the coffee shop. Others told their children l was their teacher. They remembered! They grew to become fine people and good parents. Many are successful in their careers.
For me, teaching children who are weak in their studies is to instil a sense of self-worth in them and tell them they can do much better with practice. Being weak in subjects is not a sin or failure. Failure is giving up without trying! Those who have ventured far will do well with life and will be happy adults. This is because they do not give in to fate and do not stop trying. They gain faith as teacher and parents and even friends are supportive and have faith in them.
Faith is a very important source of trust which will penetrate into their inner beings and give them new confidence to try, to get help and to help others just like them. I have witnessed this transformation in my nephew. He was indeed very weak in studies and my sister begged me to come and visit them. At first l was fed with negative comments about how lazy and unmotivated the boy was. My sister felt hopeless.
When I talked to the boy he also felt dejected. The teachers in school told him that he was hopeless. So he wanted to give up. I told him instead it would be easy to pass SPM! “Just listen to me for ten days. Do what l say and you will pass! If you want better results, study a bit more!” So l told him to write an English essay and see what I could do. It did seem “hopeless” but l told him that he could do something to make it better. “Write what you know and l will help you with what you don’t know. And learn a few more words each day.” It was like encouraging a child to eat. I enticed him to treats outside; we went out to shop and chit-chatted to ease his tension! With his cousin coaching in other subjects, we gave him much encouragement and trust! We praised his progress even though it was minimal. Slowly he was calm, not so irritable and was more focused. Soon, he was able to listen and do more!
When l left l asked for his exam schedule and promised to pray for him. I often called to reassure him that miracles happen to those who trust in God and have faith in themselves because God made no stupid people. The results came and surprised everyone. He even got an A with Bs and C and no failed subjects!
This is a testimony of faith in God and someone to trust and also faith in oneself. We can help instil faith through love and action! Spread faith, share faith, instil faith and create faith with love! It really creates miracles!