“There isn’t a kid who’s not smart. All children are smart, you just need to communicate with them, support them in everything they want to achieve and, more than anything, love them”, Alicia, mother of two kids.
Alicia Barabata had to leave school when she was 17 years old so her siblings could study. She wanted to go to Nursing school but had to work as soon as she finished high school.
Today, Alicia is a mother of two kids and wants to give her kids what she couldn’t have: education.
During an interview at the Primary Public School Gregoria Cob Cob, Alicia shared with us her thoughts on education and shared some advice for parents.
“I already see you as a great Doctor”
Alicia remembers that some years back, companies hired personnel who finished primary or junior high school.
“Not anymore. If you don’t have a high school diploma and speak English, you won’t find a good job. My youngest son is taking an English workshop and I’m really glad and thankful to this school”, Alicia.
Nothing would make Alicia and her husband happier than seeing their kids graduating from University.
“My oldest son wants to be a Doctor. When he asks me if he can make it, I always say: ‘I already see you as a great Doctor’, just keep studying”.
The “secret” is communication
Alicia considers that communication between parents and their kids is the key to prevent them from quitting school. She recommends that before punishing, grounding or even hurting their kids, parents should sit and have a conversation with them.
“I’ve seen parents who, when their kids get a low grade, they reprehend or hit them. I’ve seen it. I think this isn’t the way to encourage a kid, is quite the opposite, we lower their self-esteem”, Alicia says.
One of her sons had problems with math and geography. To help him improve his grades, Alicia sat with him for 20 minutes every day.
“During his free time, I would sit with him to practice divisions. We would talk, I would explain and gave him an example. This year, he got his highest grade in math: [moving] from 7 he got a 9”, said the proud mother.
“I advise parents to keep a good communication with their children. Communication is the key to become better people and achieve anything we want. Support your kids. If they get a low grade or if they fail, don’t hurt them or punish them. You must talk and let them know that they can get better grades. Have a dialogue”, she added.
Homework for parents
Education is a teamwork between parents and teachers.
“Sometimes we blame teachers because they don’t teach, but this starts at home. We can’t give [teachers] all the responsibility because they don’t handle two or three kids, they handle a classroom with [sometimes over] 30 kids. Teachers do the best they can, the rest is up to us, their parents”, Alicia said.
Alica, a 29-year-old mother of two sells clothes and her husband paints buildings. This year they were one of the many families who received school supplies as part of the KKIS Supplies for Success program.
“I’m really grateful to KKIS because you gave us school supplies and we only had to buy very few things. Notebooks, geometry sets, colored pens, and pencils are very expensive and thanks to you, we didn’t have to buy them”, she said.
Determined to keep supporting her children’s education, Alicia ended our conversation with the next thought:
“There isn’t a kid who’s not smart. All children are smart, you just need to communicate with them, support them in everything they want to achieve and more than anything, love them”.
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