Oct 5, 2023
My tribute to Resilient Nigerian Teachers and teachers all over the world
Growing up as an African student in the heart of Nigeria, I often found myself dreading the presence of teachers, especially the stern ones who seemed to have eyes in the back of their heads. I silently wished to blend into the classroom's dusty corners, invisible to their watchful gaze. However, fate had a different plan for me; it ensured I was never overlooked.
Those teachers had a strange ability for singling me out, asking questions that felt like riddles from another world. Questions I often had no answers to. Somehow, it was never the simple questions they'd ask. They skip over those like elusive butterflies, while I grappled with the complex ones. Even though I longed for the simplicity of the questions that others could answer with ease. But no, the universe conspired against my academic comfort.
My dread wasn't just reserved for the intimidating questions; it extended to the instruments of discipline that these educators wielded – the rubber, the pankere, and the dreaded koboko. The mere thought of facing the punishment they could unleash made my heart race and my palms sweaty. There were times when the pain was so intense that I found myself crying and begging for forgiveness, vowing never to falter again.
In those moments, I dreaded the pressure of academic success. I was driven to read solely to pass their subjects and acquire that desired good remark on my result sheet. It was a pursuit born not out of passion for knowledge but out of fear of failure.
Yet, amidst this dreadful journey, I discovered a profound love for something else – the stories our teachers shared. Their narratives could turn the dullest of subjects into fascinating tales of intrigue. They had a remarkable ability to infuse humor into their lessons, persuading laughter from even the most reluctant of students. Those are the memories that linger, the stories that still bring a smile to my face.
But what truly left an inerasable mark on my life was the unwavering dedication of these educators. In a country where the education system was burdened by numerous challenges, they stood as beacons of hope. Despite meager pay and a crumbling infrastructure, they never wavered in their commitment to our education.
Nigeria's education system faced a myriad of obstacles, from underfunding to overcrowded classrooms. Yet, these teachers refused to succumb to despair. They held extra classes, often for free, sacrificing their time and energy to ensure we had a fighting chance. Their resilience in the face of adversity was nothing short of inspiring.
They weren't just teachers; they were mentors, shaping us not only academically but also instilling values of perseverance, determination, and the importance of laughter in the face of hardship. They taught us that education was a lifeline, a means to rise above the challenges that surrounded us.
Today, I celebrate all teachers in the world, their impact will forever echo in the hearts and minds of those they touched.
Love and hugs ❤️❤️❤️