It was difficult to get back after Hurricane Maria. The friends that I had become comfortable with had moved on and graduated in 2018. I was delayed because there was no way to finish an online education in an island where all network coverage was destroyed and had to slowly recover. We had to trek down a steep hill every day and then walk to town for almost two hours just to get supplies. It was survival that was the focus at this point. Getting back means having to face a different kind of survival challenge - a grueling, mental one.
There were other personal struggles, but I will not highlight them here. Suffice it to say that the Design Project has become one of my most challenging goals. I had taken a Masters course before. By the time I was at thesis level, I had to take several terms because there was no inspiration for me to write my 100-page nonfiction book. When I had to move back to Dominica from the Philippines, I had to leave that thesis untouched and had to start again - as a UWI Open Campus student.
With all these thoughts in my head, I had to focus on concepts that were more of a struggle to learn now that I am older. However, I enjoyed the fact that I was able to find a design problem that directly impacts my class. My second grade class is a mix of naughty and nice, advanced readers and struggling readers. These children are my inspiration. I want to use a solution that I will not only submit at the end of the term on a Word Document or .pdf but that I can use in the school that I am teaching in in the years to come. It is a joy to be exposed to terms such as adaptivity and personalization. As a former multimedia instructor, I taught students who are old enough to decide if they should read and practice beyond what the school can offer during teaching hours. With the kids that I am teaching now, some of which have parents who are not always there to support them, I want to be able to find solutions, technological or not, that can continue making them persevere. As I keep on telling them in school: There are no stupid children. Do not use that word in my class. There are just children who need to make an extra effort. You all have different talents and strengths, as well. Let us respect each other. Let us not give up.