Today, we had a number of students gathered in the Conference Room with His Highness. With him were representatives from the MOE: Datin Paduka Dayang Apsah, Director of Schools Cikgu Hajah Aishah and other relevant officers. The session lasted an hour or so. It took a while for a warm up since students were kind of nervous. He's a prince after all. We teachers were nervous too. What's more the kids.
So between session, His Highness asked the students of their ambition. One by one shared it with him: surgeon, chef, musician. Then this boy answered: "Your Highness, I want to be a teacher." His Highness got interested and said, "That's good! So, what do you want to teach?" And the kid answered, "English."
I smiled. As an English teacher my self, it's nice knowing a kid wanted so much to do the one job I do :) And so, the conversations continued:
His Highness: Oh that's interesting! Why do you want to teach English?
Kid: Because my English teacher inspires me to become one, Your Highness..
Now, here is when my smile faded. Not that I wasn't happy. I was shocked! That kid, the one talking with the royal, was my student! I was like ... Hey .... that's ME he's talking about! He didn't stop there. The kid continued:
Kid: She is a good teacher. She taught me well. When I had my PMB Oral Exam last year, the examiner even complimented me.
His Highness: Oh really... that's good!
Kid: Yes, Your Highness. Her name is Teacher Suzi. She sits over there! *pointing at my direction*
And all heads turned my way. I froze! Even more surprised that the kid mentioned my name, and introduced me to the VIPs! I couldn't move!! I really didn't see it coming!
His Highness turned my way and said,"Is it you cikgu?" And I could only reply with a nod. He asked me, "So what did you do cikgu? Oh nevermind! Let's get back to the boy." Turning back to the kid, he continued, "So, what did she do in class?"
Now that totally had me stopped breathing! What did I do in class?? I was like.... OH MY GOD!! I felt investigated right away huhu~~ And so the kid answered:
Kid: Your Highness, she made me understand English better. She taught us formula to make us remember grammar. She helped us improve our English with those formula.
His Highness: Formula? *turned back to me* What formula cikgu? Do you mind sharing?
Me: Owhh.. Well, Your Highness, yes. I use formula especially when I teach grammar. Like for examples, for subject-verb-agreement, the formula are "1 person+action verb+s" and "2 persons+action verb-s". Or for modal verbs, "after can, could, shall, should, will, would, may, might, must, to+action verb-ed-ing-s"
His Highness: *looked puzzled* .... Ermmm ... I don't quite get what you mean there but if it works with your students then it's good! Well done cikgu *smiled*
Me: Yes the formula do help the students. Students do well in Maths with formula so I was thinking, "Why didn't I create formula for grammar?" Those who are good with Maths would find this method helpful because they could relate it to Maths.
His Highness: Thank you cikgu. Very well done *smiled*
And I could only nod and smile while at the same time let out a sigh of ...... satisfaction. Not because he is a VIP. A Prince. But because I was recognized by my own student! Recognition by a student gives you the best feeling as a teacher. Today made me feel grateful. I feel the respect. I feel happy. Very happy :')
Before leaving the building, His Highness addressed me, "Hey, you're the English teacher! I should go to one of your classes cikgu." And I said, "Yes, as you wish." I just didn't know what else to say as I was still overwhelmed with what had just happened :') The next thing I knew, I was walking side by side with the MOE officers. I felt so small but they were proud of me. It was indescribable :')
At the end of the day, one of the directors called me, asking for my full name and contact number. He told me to look into the formula that I've been using in class. He said there would be a convention next year and so he wanted me to present my so-called formula. All I could say was, "If you trust me to cikgu, InsyaAllah." And the next thing I knew, my audience would be principals around Asia! And I would appear on TV!! I was like ....... OH MY GOD!!!
Too many good things happened today. I feel like dreaming!! Punch me people!!! :')