You are currently browsing the monthly archive for July 2006.

My son turned 3 years old yesterday, July 20.  Instead of celebrating with a big party (like what we did last year), we decided to give a small party in his school and then we will celebrate again with family and friends this Saturday.  Here are some of the pictures we took for his birthday celebration yesterday.

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It seems like only yesterday when I gave birth to Enzo.  I can still vividly recall that day.  It was a Sunday and early in the morning, about 730AM, I had a sudden urge to go to the bathroom.  I spent about an hour in the bathroom and my hubby was getting concerned.  Fortunately, Nanay was still okay at that time and when she came home from church, Dean told her I had been in the bathroom for an hour.  She told me to get out of there because it was already time.  So I got ready and we arrived at the hospital at about 10AM.  I had a short but painful labor, but I think I was physically and emotionally ready for it because of all the pregnancy books I read (they do help!).  Enzo came out at 1:17 PM.  I had a natural childbirth (no epidural, no pain medication).  It was truly a wonderful, life-changing experience that I will never forget.

If there’s one thing that UP students never forget it’s their student numbers. 

My husband had a meeting with UP-Visayas alumni last night and he brought me along.  Although I’m from UP Diliman, I knew some people there because of hubby and my sis who also studied in UPV-Miagao.  We were asked to introduce ourselves by saying our name, our student number, and our course.  It was fun because no one seemed to forget their student number (the first two of which indicate what year you entered UP).  The youngest alumnus had a student number beginning with 00 and the oldest had a student number beginning with 87 (mine starts with 92).  It was fun meeting kindred spirits.  I don’t know, but there’s a strong bond between UP students – even those coming from different campuses.  I guess there is something unique about the UP experience that just makes us understand each other – whether we come from Diliman, Miagao, Iloilo City or any other campus. 

Last Friday Nanay went to see her neurologist for the first time since she left the hospital in October 2005.  Her doctor was really surprised to see her up and about.  She thought all along that Nanay was bed-ridden and she declared it a miracle that in less than a year she is able to get up from her bed, sit on a wheelchair, and take a few steps with a walker.  According to her, the kind of brain injury that Nanay sustained due to her two strokes (only two weeks apart) usually took a long time to heal.  In fact, some patients never recover and remain bed-ridden.  Because of the improvement my mom has shown, the doctor decided to reduce her medicines (thank God, because the cost is killing us!).

Indeed God is a God who heals. I know that our prayers have been heard and that He is continually healing Nanay.  As I look back on the past 10 months and reflect on the daunting trials we went through, I am amazed at how much God loves us.  Despite our trials, our family has remained strong mainly because of our faith and because of the prayers of relatives and friends.  And yes, from time to time, we do worry about where we would find the money to pay for Nay’s therapy or to buy her medicines, but still we are able to smile and laugh and thank God for the little miracles that happen to us each day. 

I’m asking everyone who is reading this right now, please say a prayer for healing for my mom. Pray especially that she regains her speech soon.  You will be greatly blessed!

Asians are good in math.  Filipinos are Asians.  Filipinos are good in math.

Duh… I don’t think this line of reasoning quite applies.  We’re probably the only Asians who are not doing well in this field.  I have students (first year college) who don’t know how to add, subtract, multiply, and divide signed numbers.  I had to make my first year math classes make a multiplication table because I found out that they couldn’t multiply one digit numbers! (E.g., 4×4=8)  Our mathematics education is in such a sorry state.  We put more value on athletics and the arts that we tend to forget that we use math in our daily lives and it is important that we develop the number sense in our students.

I have two Korean students in my Math and Stat classes.  Except for the fact that they are struggling in English, they’re very good in math.  I asked my Stat class one time to solve a linear equation in one unknown.  The process required an application of Algebra.  None of my Pinoy students could get it – but when I asked the Korean to answer on the board, he gave a quick – and elegant – solution.  What saddened me was that my Pinoy students couldn’t even understand the solution! 

It is difficult to make students unlearn the wrong concepts they learned back in grade school or high school.  We can’t entirely blame them, though, for some of them had been taught math by teachers whose majors were either Social Studies or PE or English.  What is worse is that these students have such a poor level of reading comprehension that makes learning math even more difficult. 

One time I gave a quiz to my Math Special class (which is a remedial class) and the instruction went this way:  State whether or not the following sets are closed under the indicated operation.  How are you supposed to answer then?  For each item, you either answer closed or not closed, right?  Well, there was this student who answered this way:  1)  whether; 2) or not; 3) whether, and so on.  You get the drift, I hope. 

Things like these get me frustrated and challenged at the same time.  I not only have to teach them math, but I have to teach them reading comprehension as well!  I just hope I can make a difference in these kids, and somehow, help them to gain some degree of mathematical literacy.

I haven’t blogged for the past three weeks or so – not because I didn’t have anything to write about, but because I just didn’t have the time.  I’ve been sooo busy with work that I can hardly check my emails.  The only computer we have in the faculty room is an ancient PC with a snail’s pace Internet connection.  Much as I would like to blog to my heart’s content, I couldn’t – because I would use up all my free time just logging in to WP.  When I get home, I am too tired to log on after the long day at work.

But, hey, I’m not complaining about my new job, because this is what I want and being dead tired at the end of the day is a lot fulfilling than not being tired but not having accomplished anything at all. 

I got a text message from a friend yesterday, asking me if it was true that I had moved to a new job.  This friend is from a sister school of the school where I used to work.  He told me I was a big loss to the school.  It felt good to be affirmed, but at the same time I felt sad that people outside of the school recognized me, while people who were there in the school couldn’t appreciate what I had to offer. 

Anyway, I’m happy where I am right now… although I could use a higher pay!  I just wish I could find time to blog more often.  I kinda miss reading other people’s blogs and I’ve had so many ideas for a blog entry but they all kinda flew away as I couldn’t find the time to write them down.  Maybe next week I’ll be able to find time because it’s exam week…or maybe not. 😦