Teaching and Activism

I am holding tutorials both online and offline. I am not a teacher by profession but Teaching is one of my passions. My mother is a grade school teacher and she used to tell me that teaching is a very fulfilling profession. Some of her students are already holding government positions and some have decent jobs and she’s happy everytime she meets them at the mall with their families and would stop and say hello and would acknowledge her wisdom and patience.

I am helping her to fix her visual stuffs since I was in grade school and I remember that my first experience in teaching was when I was in grade 5. They had an emergency conference, she went to my room and asked me to watch her grade one class. I was very hesitant at first but she told me to just give them some task so they won’t go out of the room. She endorsed me in her class and warned them that I would record the names of the noisy students and they will be punished when she return.

When she left the room, one student raised her hand and asked me, “What is our lesson for today ma’am?” I was surprised and I stood infront of the class and told them I will be reading a short story and they must listen carefully because I will ask them afterwards. I was amazed how they listen silently until I finished the story. After that I asked them to draw the characters on the board. It was fun how they gave me their own interpretations and I really enjoyed it. After that day, my mom usually asks me to watch her class everytime there is an emergency conference. Some of my mom’s students even call me madam during recess or even outside the school.

That was a great experience and maybe you would ask me why I didn’t take her field. Well, that’s another story lol 🙂 But it seems that I was destined to teach. When I was working at Japanese Corporation, I was assigned to conduct trainings for newly hired employees, that was before I became a labor union leader. When I ran for the position of Union Vice President of our worker’s union, IWSWU (International Wiring Systems Workers Union), I gained an overwhelming votes and it was surprising because I was just a stranger in Tarlac during those time. Maybe, my church activity has helped me a lot. We had 4 thousand members then. My 5 years as union vice president were spent educating my members about their basic rights as a workers. We formed an Education Committee and we held continuous labor educations.

I was also the Chairman of the Broad Alliance of Trade Union in Tarlac then. These photos are my guests from ISA, International Solidarity Affairs. Most of them are journalists and Trade Union leaders from different countries, Germany, Australia, Indonesia and US. They usually integrate with us to learn our culture and trade union struggles. I usually narrate the actual trade union situation in the area and we usually share each other’s experiences on how we resolve issues and grievances. This is a very rewarding activity to both of us as we are able to learn from each other.

I was 7 months pregnant in this photo. I was with Japanese Trade Union Leaders and Journalists and we had a local village immersion at Hacienda Luisita. These are farm workers who are facing land issues and we gathered them after their work so we will be able to know their issues.

I had my share in grievances, court battles, rallies, walk-outs and other forms of collective struggles to stand for workers’ right both inside and outside the company premises. This has led me to the streets walking with clenched fists, shouting and asking for a change. Years of my stay as a union officer has changed me and I emerged as a fearless leader doing my speeches during rallies which is usually held in the middle of the streets and trucks serves as our stage.

Those were the years that we topple Estrada Administration. But the succeeding years after a new president was put in power, series of political killings has been exercised killing many of our allies. Most of the active leaders in different organizations which are radically fighting and stands for the call of decent wages and humane working environment were shot to death.

Some of them were tagged as terrorists when in fact they were just simple workers who are just fighting for workers’ rights. I myself was included in 10 leaders in OB Hit list in 2005 and sad to say that most on that list were already in their grave. My father who is a retired military advised me to slow down and leave my job because my life will be in great danger. I am a mother of 4 kids and in as much as I want to serve the people, I knew that my kids are waiting for me at home everyday hoping that they will see me alive.

Leaving my job which I spent half of my life and the people who are defending on my leadership was the hardest part of my life. Seeing their tearful faces while I was submitting my resignation was so hard to endure. Even the tough guys who used to accompany me were crying and I was so stunned for their love and support. It took me more than a year to recover that loss and the internet has served as my healing balm.

Some photo of my Trade Union Struggles

Now, I am teaching again. I am holding IT trainings either free or paid depending on the arrangement. Recently I conducted an IT training for Martinet faculty and that was in my previous posts.

I will be creating online tutorials here but it will be in Tagalog language. I will add another page for that. Why Tagalog, because it’s for my fellow Pinoys both here and abroad. There are already a lot of trainings here in the internet for you guys who are in foreign countries.

At para sa mga kababayan ko, gagawa ako ng mga modules para madali nyong maintindihan. Magsisimula lang muna tayo sa simple o basic IT Skill. Antayin po lamang ninyo sa mga susunod na araw at ipo post ko ang mga paunang lesson natin.

Okay guys, till here and see you in my next post. Thank you for reading.

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5 comments on “Teaching and Activism

  1. Hi Chris! Thanks for dropping by and for including me in the contest:) Well, I’m not that popular yet, just giving it a shot to meet new friends…

    Like

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