Education Author and Teacher of 50 years writes about motivation and how to get your learning groove on!
IF IT IS TO BE IT IS UP TO ME!
Author of “Tips and Tidbits for Parents and Teachers – celebrating 50 years in the classroom and sharing what I have learned.’ Canadian Pat Kozyra, writes for Keep Climbing the NQF.
Pat, who has been teaching in Hong Kong for the past 14 years, writes about learning motivation and her passion for education.
The Education Passion
Most of my teaching was in Canada. I am a Primary Specialist, a Learning Specialist and I taught Gifted Children for 15 years. I am the weekly soloist for a large church in Hong Kong and I now teach students privately.
I am a free-lance writer for the SCMP, Epoch Times, STEM Magazine and others that feature articles for parents. I am a motivational speaker for both parents and teachers. I have two married daughters and six delightful grandchildren.
Motivation, Inspiration and Multiple Intelligence
All parents want their children to become significant contributors to society some day and parents need all the help they can get. I feel my book does just that. One of the chapters that is a “must read” is the Motivational and Inspirational chapter.
I love using quotes, rhymes, little stories and songs to get my point across and I feel we learn a lot through this kind of sharing. When I taught Gifted Children one of the most challenging and important aspects was to find out “what lights his fire?” or “what turns his crank?”, and then to encourage the student to really run with it.
Sometimes it meant taking a survey or doing a Multiple Intelligence Test to help the student know his or her strengths and talents. These can all be found in my book along with ways to prepare students for all kinds of different tests, so it is very helpful for high school students, university students, and adults.
I have always tried to instill in my students an attitude or philosophy that I followed all my life through thick and thin, and I can sum that up in just ten two-letter words which are:
IF IT IS TO BE IT IS UP TO ME!
In other words, nobody else can, or will, or should, or may, do it for you.
If it is going to be YOU have to be instrumental yourself. You have to commit to it and just do it! Then it will be done.
Another thing I want to share with you is the poster I always had up in my classroom that said, “YOU HAVE TO MAKE IT HAPPEN!”. I always had my students say this out loud with me five times and each time we would loudly stress a different word in the sentence for effect and a new slant on the meaning. Try doing this yourself and you will see what I mean. In other words, if it is going to happen, you are the one who will make it happen.
Something that is not talked about as often as it should be and perhaps not taken seriously enough is Emotional Intelligence (Dr. Daniel Goleman). Some experts say Emotional Intelligence is even more important than I. Q.
Remember we are Not born with a high or low self-esteem. It is developed and fostered by all of those around us right from our birth. A child’s self-esteem can be become low or even destroyed through a lack of encouragement by one or both parents, by a sibling, by teachers, or by a classroom bully. You know they used to tell us when we were children to always say “ Sticks and stones will break my bones but names will never hurt me”. Well that just isn’t really the case a lot of times. Sticks and stones can break my bones but bullying may be fatal.
It is said and I quote: “It is easier to build up a child than it is to repair an adult. So: choose your words wisely”.
Self- Esteem is simply how you value yourself and knowing that you have worth.
Someone once said “A mother who radiates self-love and self-acceptance actually vaccinates her child against low self-esteem”.
A famous quote from Eleanor Roosevelt is: “Nobody can make you feel inferior without your consent”. So this tells us that we have to really help our children with their self- esteem so that they can withstand something like bullying if it should happen. That would then help prevent the many suicides by children I think. We have to instill in our children the fact that as someone once said, “Your Value does not decrease based on someone’s inability to see your worth”- all bullies should take note.
Discipline and Problem Solving
Many students now are quite familiar with Dr. Howard Gardiner’s Multiple Intelligences – the seven ways of learning and a few more intelligences like Naturalist or Nature Smart and Existentialist have been added in recent years. Gardiner says everyone has all of the intelligences but in different proportions.
Many parents often find disciplining (not punishing!) their children a real challenge. I cannot give this quote out enough by Barbara Coloroso for parents to remember and use:
“ SAY WHAT YOU MEAN , MEAN WHAT YOU SAY, AND DO WHAT YOU SAID YOU WERE GOING TO DO”.
I feel this is the bottom line to disciplining your child.
One of the things that was instilled in us at a week-long Creative Problem Solving Institute at Buffalo State University was this: “THERE IS NO PROBLEM SO GREAT IT CANNOT BE SOLVED”.
This should be something we say to ourselves and our children often.
For those of you who are religious, let me end with a poem I think we should read and which should be read to our children over and over again. It is called “I’m Special.”
I’m special. In all the world there is nobody like me. Since the beginning of time there has never been another person like me. Nobody has my smile. Nobody has my eyes, my nose, my hair, my hands, my voice. I’m special.
Nobody can be found who has my handwriting. Nobody anywhere has my tastes – for food or music or art. No one sees things just as I do. In all of time there has been no one who laughs like me, no one who cries like me. And what makes me laugh and cry will never provoke identical laughter and tears from anybody else ever. No one reacts to any situation just as I would react, I’m special.
I am the only one in all of creation who has my set of abilities. Oh, there will always be someone who is better at one of the things I’m good at, but no one in the universe can reach the quality of my combination of talents, ideas, abilities, and feelings. Like a room full of musical instruments, some may excel alone but none can match the symphony sound when all are played together, I’m a symphony!
Through all of eternity, no one will ever look, talk, walk, think or do like me. I’m special. I’m rare. And, as in all rarity, there is great value. Because of my great value, I need not attempt to imitate others. I’ll accept –yes, celebrate my differences. I’m special.
And I am beginning to see that God made me special for a very special purpose. He must have a job for me that no one else can do as well as I. Out of all the billions of applicants, only one is qualified; only one has the right combination of what it takes. That one is ME, because…. I’m special.
Best wishes to all. Sincerely Pat Kozyra
My book can be found at Amazon books.com.