You didn't think I was going to speak about good women (did you?) lol.
The endangered species are (roll the drums...) -Good teachers
On my way to work today, many thoughts competed for my attention but the one that came to stay was about Mr. Olarenwaju and Mr. Fasina.
Mr. Olarenwaju was my maths teacher in Olashore International School. I was terrible at maths back then (but now I think I am much better at it now because now I have to count my money and I count it well in figures and in cash)
I remember he called me after class one day and told me he would be giving me extra lessons in maths. I mean it was that bad, I was clueless. Mr Olarenwaju taught me maths a few times patiently. explaining what X was relating to subjects I loved like Literature etc. He was determined that maths was not gonna hinder me in life.
Now, Mr. Olarenwaju never got any kind of incentive from my parents because he never met them. I am not sure I ever told my parents what this kind elderly man did for me.
But he died when I was in JSS 3 but I remember then that I made a mental note to track his family down in the future and repay them one way or another for what this kind teacher did for me (that I have not done, yet! Lord Help!)
Enter Mr Fasina...
He was Vice-Principal Admin at the same school. He heard me sing once in JSS 1 and immediately cornered me. He recognized my talent. He began singing lessons with me every siesta time between mondays-fridays. (So while the whole school slept, I sang!). He would pick a musical piece from Handel, Bach, Mozart and I would spend the whole term rehearsing and then singing it in front of an audience at the end of the term. He did this for Yetunde Fabiyi,Funmi Aloba and one or two people.
And like Mr. Olarenwaju, he never got an incentive from my parents. He just trained a singing voice he recognised early. He imbibed good music and trained my ears to hear music, sounds and reject the (often misunderstood Nigerian noise called Music, yep, that I figured that out on my own)
I write today with some measure of pain because I know those types of teachers are few and far between. Everyone is looking for a quick Fix. No one wants to impart a life without making a buck on the side. (My parents run a school, so I have an idea of what I am saying)
So please post comments about teachers that helped you beyond the scope of their duties. Let us celebrate these endangered species. Perhaps the young teachers may learn from their predecessors. Perhaps we all may borrow a leaf and help those around us amplify their gifts or teach something they don't know.
Like I always say, it is just through my eyes.
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