I must have said this a couple of times already but I say it again that my encounter with Aileen Dacasin as a LETer was brief but meaningful. She was one of our reviewees at MyReviewCoach.com online LET review. Despite our fleeting encounter, she was among the LETers I remembered for her very sincere gesture of gratitude.
It was the last day of MindGym’s 3-Day Power Coaching for March 2013 LET when she approached me, held my hands, hugged me and said, “Maraming salamat po talaga ma’m at nakasama ako sa three-day coaching dito sa MindGym.”
She left me with a different sense and feeling of happiness and fulfillment — for having met a critical need at the right time, as a LET coach.
When the March 2013 LET results came out last 18 April and I saw Aileen’s name listed as Top 1 for the elementary level, memories of my fleeting interaction with her flashed back, gave me shivers, and gave me added resolve to be MindGym’s coach mo/am A.
Indeed, it is true that:
“The entire sum of existence is the magic of being needed by just one person.” —Vi Putnam
For me, one overriding message resounded in Aileen’s post-LET feedback on MyReviewCoach/MindGym, personal interview by The Inquirer, talk during MindGym’s victory party, and speech during the PRC-LET oath taking ceremony last June 9: Know yourself to fulfill your purpose in life to help others with love.
In these instances, she never failed to leave her readers-listeners with questions to ponder on.
In her post-LET feedback aimed at helping future online reviewees of MindGym to follow her winning footsteps, she ended with:
Indeed, passing the LET is not the end. Getting one’s teaching license is a key that unlocks new opportunities to serve God and others. With this, let us always keep the attitude of success, of which much is about saying “yes” to what is of real value and saying “no” to what is merely fleeting… saying “yes” to the ‘highest’ good we are born for, and “no” to anything less than that.
Now, the questions “What is of value?” and “What are we born for?” are up to each one of us to answer.
It might be enough at this moment to think that when there are moments when we seem to give up, we can choose to smile, get up, and remember that there might be truth to the saying “Whatever is of value costs a lot.” No matter what, there is no other way but forward.
The Inquirer recounted her stops and turns before she became Top 1 and quoted her advice to those who will be taking the teacher’s board exams.
I take my topping the Licensure Examination for Teachers (LET) as providential.. God didn’t place me on top just for me to abandon teaching..
Teaching is very fulfilling because you directly see whom you are serving. You directly give yourself to them..
Look beyond the LET. See yourself as a teacher. How would you like to be? Which theories or principles will you uphold? What do you believe in?
Aileen’s oath taking speech (quoted verbatim) below reverberate with her philosophy of searching for one’s own purpose of existence, especially her fellow new teachers, so that one could truthfully fulfil one’s mission in making life better for one’s students:
Looking Beyond the LET
Today, we promise to abide by the principles and the code of ethics that the teaching profession requires. Beyond getting our license, renewing our commitment is a joyful affirmation we will make every day in accepting the sacrifices and joys of our vocation as teachers.
First, allow me to share to you a story.
Noong ako po ay nasa grade 2, umuwi po kami sa Pangasinan para magbakasyon. Isang araw, pumunta kami sa bukid para mamitas ng kamatis at sili na iuuwi namin sa bahay sa Antipolo (sa Antipolo po kami noon nakatira). Habang namimitas ng mga kamatis at sili, may mga nakausap akong mga magsasaka. Bilang isang bata, medyo nahirapan akong mag-isip nang mabilis kung ang pinipitas ko ay hinog o hilaw. Pero nakita siguro nila na gusto kong matuto. Inalalayan nila ako at tuwang-tuwa naman ako.
Sabi ko sa kanila, “gusto kong maging magsasaka.”
Nagulat ako sa reaksiyon nila nang tumawa sila nang malakas at sinabing, “Naku! Mas madaling mamitas kaysa magtanim.”
Naalala ko, sinabi nila sa akin na mas mainam na magtrabaho sa siyudad o sa ibang bansa. Sabi nila, mag-engineer ka o kaya doktor o kaya abogado. Malaki ang kita.
Bakit nga ba ganoon ang naging reaksiyon nila?
Una, maaaring hindi nila alam kung gaano kahalaga ng mga pang-araw-araw nilang gawain sa kapakanan ng iba o nakararami.
Ikalawa, maaaring hindi nila naramdaman noong panahong iyon ang pagpapahalaga o pasasalamat o suporta ng lipunan sa kanila.
Ngayon, mayroon akong mga tanong.
Kung may batang magsabi sa atin na gusto nilang maging isang guro, tatawanan rin ba natin sila? Maramdaman kaya natin ang naramdaman ng mga magsasakang nakausap ko?
Bilang mga guro na humuhulma o humuhubog sa mga puso at isip ng tao, ano ang tingin natin sa mundo? Sa tao? Sa ating mga estudyante?
Utak na tinubuan ng tao? Katawang tinubuan ng utak? Puso na tinubuan ng utak para maging tao? Makina na pwedeng i-program (para gawin ang gusto natin o ng iba na gawin nila)? Ano?
Sabi nila, ang guro ay nagpapakita ng katotohanan. Pero anong katotohanan muna tungkol sa tao ang kinikilala ng bawat isa sa atin? Paano iniimpluwensiyahan ng pagkilala o paniniwalang ito ang pagtugon natin sa tawag ng ating propesiyon?
Sabi nila, kung gusto raw nating irespeto tayo ng ating mga sarili at ng iba, kailangang alam natin kung ano at sino talaga tayo. Ano ang katotohanan sa pag-iral bilang isang tao? Sa pagsubok na alamin at kilalalanin natin ito lamang natin tunay na matatanggap at mamahalin ang responsibilidad natin.
Sa puntong ito lamang tayo makagagawa ng mga epektibo at pangmatagalang solusyon sa mga problema sa edukasyon.
Sa puntong ito lang natin masasabi na tayo ay may tunay na kalayaang gumawa ng mga matatalinong pagpapasiya.
Sa puntong ito lang masasabing ang guro ay may sariling pag-iisip at may sariling malayang pamaraan o panuntunan para sa paggawa ng mga araw-araw na desisyon sa paaralan.
Higit sa lahat, sa puntong ito lang natin matututunang respetuhin at mahalin nang tunay ang ating pinagsisilbihan.
Sabi nga nila, ang taong inaalam ang totoo, at kumikilos nang naaayon dito, sa kabila ng hirap, panggigipit, o pagkawala ng pagkilala ng nakararami o ng mga itinuturing na kaibigan ay siyang mas karespe-respeto.
Sa kabilang dako, pasalamatan natin ang pampubliko at pampribadong sektor na nagtutulungan para magkaroon ng mga oportunidad sa pagpapabuti ng kalidad ng ating edukasyon, para sa lipunan, para sa bansa.
Let us thank the Almighty for entrusting us with great responsibilities no matter how unworthy we may be, and let us ask Him that He make us less unworthy…that He help us help ourselves and others better.
Let us always remember our parents, our families, our guardians, our friends, our benefactors, and our great teachers who want us to turn out well that we may also help others turn out well.
Let us always remember those who have been helping us in our daily struggles… those who may still be with us, and those who have passed on to the next life.
To all of them, let us dedicate and offer our craft, our work well done, every single day, out of love for those whom we have to serve.
Maraming maraming salamat po. Congratulations po sa ating lahat.
With the personal outlook she has as an individual, the provoking questions she left her readers-listeners, her attitude of gratitude towards those who helped her, and her humility to acknowledge that God’s hands moves everything — I am sure that Aileen knows what she is on earth for, will receive sufficient graces to fulfil her mission and will find a place in the hearts of her many students in the year to come.
How about you teacher or teacher-to-be, have you asked yourselves: Who am I? Why am I here reviewing, learning, or teaching? What’s next after I pass the LET and get my license?