What does it take to be a teacher?

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Teaching in the 21st century, I say is not limited inside the four classroom walls. The world is a classroom, and life itself is a podium for learning.

Beyond school academics, we strive to make our place better by pushing for environments that would open the eyes of a child by himself. And like enculturating any native or tribe to a new way of life, it has complex effects. Yet, the fruits are sweeter.

The best one, I guess, is to strike curiosity into a child’s mind. Seeing an eye open up in wander or in wonder definitely is a piece of heaven already. When a child goes to a place, his mind starts to wonder, seeking questions and even trying to fill that gap between not knowing and knowing.

It doesn’t have to be in a place that would cost more than a penny, it could just be somewhere else, in the backyard, in offices, and in places within a city or nearby town. The point here is, learning is immersive. And the tools are free: questions, small talks, answers, processing.

But why elsewhere, like Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, and Cambodia?

Because we hear and see clearly that it is going to be ASEAN in the next century. The time has come that the East rises fully with its strength. That Eastern spirituality has now risen to take its claim, influencing the rest of the world’s insights, architecture, thinking, and philosophy.

With this at hand, we need to prepare our children to think and take hold of that future. As we open up to these nations, we don’t become slaves to them. Rather, we become friends. We are willing to learn and be learned.

The paradigm has shifted. But this is not about trending. It’s about opening a child’s eye to see for himself what is out there.

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