PLEASE REPLY

In the gaming world, talking in all caps means war. Many times, I have used my EBB (electronic billboard-Tantra Ph) with words in all caps just to make my point known all over Mandara, Jina and all the other towns of Tantra. It gives a person that satisfaction that if you “speak” in all caps, they would know you are really seething.

Akala mo naman eh makakapatay ang allcaps.

Weird, but sometimes, the intensity of the emotions involved in cheating opponents, stuck up partymates, and ignorant ashram members would make one tap away on the keyboard in all caps, wishing it were making an effect to the other person.

However, of course, that phase of being an addict to online games has passed (or has it? lol). The online world has changed for the past 20 years as well. Instead of just playing online, we now conduct classes online as well. However, we still seem to be at loss on the proper use of the all caps.

So, in the online metaworld, when do we use the allcaps?

  • When we want to emphasize a word, a phrase, a term, or a whole sentence. We do not just encode in all caps just because we want to. It depicts a feeling of authority and superiority. MOM took the car. Mom TOOK the car. Mom took the CAR. 
  • We need to catch someone’s attention. Maybe you are in a group chat, and someone is not paying attention and/or ignoring you, yeah, you have to make a statement-in all caps. HELLLLOOOOO???
  • If the combination of letters is confusing or might be ambiguous. Like myself, my nickname is EL. I usually type it in allcaps because it has been in more than one occasion that I have been called E-I. Or my online game, EILMOREL. I would rather type it in uppercase to avoid confusion. Or maybe an email address with confusing letters such as the small L and a big I. So, type it in all caps and just mention that it should be in the lowercase.
  • As a title. Of course, the most common use of the uppercase is for a work’s title.
  • When we are ecstatic. Yes! It is ok to use allcaps if the context of your message is pure ecstasy. How many time have we sent a message in all caps saying how happy we are? OMG! OMG! OMG! I PASSED THE BOARD EXAM!
  • WHEN WE ARE ANGRY. Or at least emotional. Instead of throwing the phone to the wall, we type in all caps. That is where we pour our emotions. WHY ARE YOU BEING SO STUBBORN ON THIS???

So the next time you post something in uppercase, think twice on how the recipient will interpret (or misinterpret-haha) your message. Unless you are of course, in any of the above-mentioned scenarios.

Look at how these words seem different when in the uppercase:

no. NO.

yes. YES.

okay. OKAY.

what? WHAT?

thanks. THANKS.

 

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Mother to Hundreds Can’t be a Mom-to-the-Rescue

For years, my job as a teacher has given me the chance to be a guiding second parent to my students. However, for that span of time, I have also yearned to ask for a chance to be a mom to my sons (and soon, to my daughter when she starts schooling).

 

Envious of the parents who have time to bring their children to school, to attend PTA meetings, to be a PTA and GPTA officer, to speak up for my children, to demand why a teacher doesn’t do her job, to support the school during activities as a parent… these are some events I really, really want to do.

 

However, being a teacher limits me and my powers as a parent. First of all, I always try to put myself in the shoes of the teachers. Even if it is as plain as daylight and sunlight that a teacher doesn’t teach my son anything, I keep mum. This I have to do as a sign of respect to my fellow teacher. Where is justice in being questioned on a simple typographical error when I myself could not report a teacher who regularly comes late to class and spends more than half of the time lamenting on irrelevant matters?

 

Being a teacher and a mother is difficult. But that is an understatement. Lately, I have been warning my students on the danger of a possible “volcanic eruption” since I have been adjusting my class requirements and deadlines so the students will feel less stressed, even for a tenth of an inch.

 

But being a human being, it is only of my nature to come to a point where I get to break down. How come that I get to adjust for my students’ comfort and yet a fellow teacher would let him check their long exam during exam week?

 

Lately I have been asking myself and my fellows how the integrity, character, personality and the whole being of teachers have changed. It seems to be that teachers who selflessly work extra hours for the students’ learning are part of an endangered species. More and more teachers get to work sleepless nights only because they need to comply to reports, researches and numerous tasks that do not really teach students at all, just making the learners guinea pigs for their research proposals and innovations.

 

Now, going back to being a mom. I just cannot be one when it comes to schoolwork. Even my son cannot just be himself. He knows that teachers expect more from him. When my son tells me of the dilemmas he face at school, I just teach him tricks to adjust, react, or answer. Unlike non-teaching parents, I cannot go straight to the Principal’s Office to demand why my son is experiencing such difficulties. When his body bogs down due to fatigue, I cannot go to school to demand why teachers give all of their requirements at the same time. I can’t. But deep down, I want to be one.

 

I also want my son to feel that I can fight for him. But I can’t. Because I am a teacher. In my profession, becoming a teacher surpasses motherhood. Tonight I broke down, felt that I am hopeless to standing up for my son. But this is the choice I took, 16 years back when at 20 years old, I thought I could change the world.

 

But I guess, I need to just change my students’ lives and watch them change the world for me. As for motherhood, I hope and pray that my children get to have more teachers who are selfless enough to make them learn lessons in life. Not just lessons for grades, not for reports, not for researches.

 

 

A System Gone Haywire

The reason an educator is in the profession of teaching is to educate and empower. Sadly, the quality of education is deteriorating because teachers are nowadays fixated on innovating just for the sake of promotion, and showing off. Lately, students have been overheard muttering, “Action research yan ni maam” and “Wait pipicturan pa tayo for documentation.” This, to a real teacher, is heartbreaking.

To this, I apologize to the students.

Sorry. For the teachers who are driven to create portfolios, documentations, and reports.

Sorry. For the teachers who leave you on self-learning “innovations” so they can finish whatever they need to level up, so to speak.

But I also assure you, there are still those who look beyond the grades, outputs and portfolios. There are teachers who think of ways to improve the learning system, not for their selves, but for YOU.

Teachers, wouldn’t you want to be the one who will be remembered as “yan yung teacher ko na nakapagpaappreciate sa akin ng (insert subject), kahit pa anong hirap.” You are not what the students need to remember. These are the knowledge you share, the lessons you imbibe, the values you impart.

starting anew

It has been  years since I have tried to stop and think. So, this is just the beginning of a new me. I have always said: “I wish I could go back and be the ME I was a few years back” but, I now realized that wishing for that kind of thing is just futile. Now, knowing what I have set as a goal, it’s time to start anew.