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Sunday, 09 November 2014 00:00

Fruitful Achievements in Education Group

Written by  Chin Kee Keu & Yaw Ah Moi, KL & Selangor / Translated by Lee Marn Fong

Jia Lü, who used to be addicted to computer games, became diligent in his studies and delighted his father, Ng See Seong. The son presented a bouquet to his father and they hugged each other dearly on stage, moving all the participants. [Photograph by Leong Chian Yee]

On November 9, 2014, the Education Group of Tzu Chi KL & Selangor, comprising Tzu Chi Teachers’ Association, Tzu Ching, Tzu Shao, Parent-child Bonding Class, Da Ai kindergarten and “Great Love Mothers”, jointly organized the first concluding ceremony, sharing their respective achievements. Held in three sessions, the ceremony drew in a crowd of more than 1,600 participants.


 
The hope of society lies in quality human resources, which can only be achieved through education. Tzu Chi’s educational concept emphasizes on the provision of a learning and growing environment along with a spirit of humanitarianism, thereby cultivating future generations of hope. Distinguished speakers from each group were invited to share their moments of sadness and experiences of joy. Their sincere sharing had deeply touched all participants.
 
Echo Chien, CEO of Tzu Chi KL & Selangor, said movingly, “It is very touching to note that although the Education Group has not been established for long, we have seen fruitful results due to volunteers’ contributions. The seeds of loving-kindness have been spread near and far, thanks to the perseverance of the Education Group.” 
 
Repent the wrongs; beg for forgiveness
 
During the sharing session by Parent-child Bonding Class, Khor Leng Leng said, “Only through raising a child would one be able to appreciate the profoundness of parental love. Let me quote a phrase from Compassionate Samadhi Water Repentance that says: The law of cause and effect never fails, hence one must repent for the negative karma created.” With courage, she stood in front of the crowd and repented of what she had done wrongly.
 
At the young and innocent age of 13, she ran away from home, breaking her parents’ hearts. But, when she returned home after some time, her parents welcomed her back with open arms. At the age of 15, she met her husband, whom she married despite parental objections. After marriage, she discovered his bad habits and was unhappy. Later on, she found Tzu Chi and joined as a volunteer. She was deeply moved by a Jing Si Aphorism, “There are two things in life that cannot wait: fulfilling filial piety and doing good deeds”.
 
Leng Leng further shared that on one occasion, she went home and knelt in front of her mother to repent on her past wrongdoings. But, when she wanted to repay kindness to her mother and father, they passed away respectively due to sickness. The pain of “not being able to be filial when you want to” was indescribable. Her father’s biggest concern was her happiness and well-being after his demise.
 
At this juncture, tears welled up in her eyes. She continued, “My advice to all is, spend more time with your parents when they are still around, and do not cause them unnecessary worries. To quote one phrase from Jing Si Aphorisms, ‘The greatest punishment in life is regret’. There is no turning back in life, so live it well.”
 
Addicted to games; resolve with great love
 
If your child is addicted to computer games, neglecting his/her studies and not listening to advice, how would you feel as parents? Volunteer Ng See Seong shared that this Jing Si Aphorism, “Change yourself first before you try changing others”, has eased the tension between him and his child.
 
His child’s addiction to computer games used to trouble Ng, and with their frequent arguments, their relationship hit rock bottom. He then swallowed his pride and started to play electronic games with his son. At times he even offered his opinions. Slowly, he influenced his son to reduce the time spent on computer games and set aside more time for studies. This reduced the conflicts between them and the child gradually resumed his normal routine.
 
He was grateful that through his participation in Tzu Shao, and with help from many Samaritans, he was able to guide his son back onto the right path. At the end of the sharing and just as he was about to descent from the stage, his son suddenly appeared and presented a bouquet to him, as well as, hung a bronze medal he won in a 400-metre relay at school, around his father’s neck. The son said, “I have never won any award in studies. This is my first medal and I have won it just in time to present it to my father.” Both father and son hugged each other dearly on stage, and this drew a rapturous applause from the audience, who shared their joy.
 
Be the key; arouse loving-kindness
 
A drama based on a real life story was performed to illustrate the mission of teachers in nurturing the character in children. Zhang Kai Jie, who was transferred to Teacher Lee Geok Cheng’s class, loved to tease other classmates, causing annoyance and complaints. Once, he took two weeks’ leave for an overseas trip, and upon his return, was very moody and bad-tempered. All the classmates avoided him. Teacher Geok Cheng noted his changed behaviour and learnt the “truth” from his mother. Then, one day in the library, Kai Jie confided in Geok Cheng that he was hoping to have his father back.
 
His father had apparently passed away overseas after an illness. Prior to his demise, his father had told him not to reveal the truth of his death for fear of being stigmatized; and Kai Jie had been enduring this heavy emotional burden since. Teacher Geok Cheng then counselled him to turn grief into blessing for his father. At the same time, she also guided all students to show their concern and care for Kai Jie.
 
Xiao Hua was the first one to hug Kai Jie; and later that evening, Teacher Geok Cheng called Xiao Hua’s mother to inform her of his kind deed. His mother then wrote a news article about this and a sentence read: “Dear teacher, I thank you. If my child is willing to help a friend in trouble to become a man of virtue, an encouraging call from you has certainly been the key to arouse his innate kindness.”
 
Teacher Geok Cheng continued, “The kind words from the parent were etched in my memory, and they were instrumental in motivating me indirectly. Children were born with a pure nature. Nurture them well and the seeds of loving-kindness will sprout and grow.”
 
Never too late; head for the right direction
 
Cheak Wei Ying, Principal of SJK(C) Kg. Baru Ampang shared, “It is never too late to take steps in the right direction.” Although encountering Tzu Chi at the age of 52, it had enabled her to learn “the” teaching method.
 
Great Love Mothers have worked hard in SJK(C) Kg. Baru Ampang for five years, using Jing Si Aphorisms as a tool to enhance the interaction between parents and teachers, and to steer the students towards the right behaviour. Principal Cheak expressed that she will try to convince more teachers to join the Tzu Chi Teachers’ Association, and to drive more parents to be “Great Love Mothers”. These three groups need to work together in promoting humanistic education.
 
Ou Ming Hua, Deputy Headmistress of SJK(C) Yuk Chyun, who was promoted to Federal Superintendent in February 2014, has joined Tzu Chi Teachers’ Association in 1996. She had shared Jing Si Aphorisms at SJK(C) Subang the following year. One particular phrase, “Human beings have unlimited potential”, had made her strive for a breakthrough in teaching methods to help the weak students to understand the syllabus. She later changed her teaching methods as she realized that to change others, she needs to first change herself.
 
Ming Hua further shared that her second child used to stress her, causing their relationship to be very tense. Like a dose of medicine, the Jing Si Aphorisms have helped resolve family conflicts, and unite the family. The second child is now a second year student in university with good results, and is also close to her.
 
Ming Hua, who went back to Taiwan in 2005, had participated actively in Parent-child Bonding Class and Great Love Mothers’ Nurturing Class for more than ten years upon returning home. As her teaching work became busier, she has little time left for Tzu Chi’s activities. She was, however, happy to attend the concluding ceremony as it was like “homecoming”.
 
Communicate effectively; praise not blame
 
Participating parent, Li Li Jing shared, “I admire Ng See Seong’s tolerance and patience. He even packed lunch for his child, who was engrossed in computer games. This is truly unbelievable. The way he compromised for a bigger picture to resolve conflicts with wisdom, had deeply touched me.”
 
Li Jing is currently facing a child, who often came home late and went to school late. From the sharing, she realized that effective communication was through praise and not blame. She would try to understand her child’s inner world and hope to improve their strained relationship.
 
Teacher Wei Shu Ping from SJK(C) Kuen Cheng 2, had used Jing Si Aphorisms to teach her children at home. Although there were no posters on the wall, the children were very familiar with them. Whenever they said something unrightfully, Shu Ping would stare at them and the children would say, “Mama, I will speak only the kind words.” She felt pleased with her children’s mindfulness and obedience.
 
Shu Ping also shared a heart-warming story from school. She related that “Recently a boy forgot to bring his water bottle to school, and his grandpa made a trip to deliver it to him.” Seeing this, Shu Ping asked the boy how the water tasted as he was drinking it. The boy answered, “It has a sweet taste, because there is love from grandpa.”
 
Shu Ping was overjoyed and felt that the daily guidance was clearly absorbed by the students. Following that, she advised the boy to serve a cup of tea to his grandpa when he went home. The next day, the grandpa came to the classroom to thank the teacher personally, as it was the first time he was served by his grandson!
 
 
“Thousands of blessings and wishes, to the kids a future with hope, in many years to come still a future with hope… Great love as the pillar, wisdom as the wall, seize the present moment, construct a palace of hope…” The event came to a close with all members went on stage to sing this song, “A Future with Hope”.
 
 
A footage showing the Education Group’s journey for the past one year was screened. [Photograph by Boon Wui Kong]   Students from Parent-child Bonding Class presented “Happy Children” in sign language, with the message to listen to the Master and be an obedient child! [Photograph by Lim Su Nguan]

A footage showing the Education Group’s journey for the past one year was screened. [Photograph by Boon Wui Kong]
 
Students from Parent-child Bonding Class presented “Happy Children” in sign language, with the message to listen to the Master and be an obedient child! [Photograph by Lim Su Nguan]
 
Echo Chien, CEO of Tzu Chi KL & Selangor, felt grateful with the contributions of volunteers after seeing the achievements by the Education Group within a short period. [Photograph by Lim Su Nguan]   Khor Leng Leng was in deep regret for not being able to be filial when she wanted to. She reminded all that there is no turning back in life, so live it well. [Photograph by Ong Siew Geok]

Echo Chien, CEO of Tzu Chi KL & Selangor, felt grateful with the contributions of volunteers after seeing the achievements by the Education Group within a short period. [Photograph by Lim Su Nguan]
 
 
Khor Leng Leng was in deep regret for not being able to be filial when she wanted to. She reminded all that there is no turning back in life, so live it well. [Photograph by Ong Siew Geok]
 
Lee Geok Cheng expressed that through teaching of Jing Si Aphorisms, she learnt to look at things differently and be empathetic with children. Her relationship with children is always harmonious. [Photograph by Leong Chian Yee]   Ou Ming Hua (1st from right), a Federal Superintendent, also a member of Tzu Chi Teachers’ Association, has strived for better educational methods after encountering Jing Si Aphorisms teaching method in 1996. [Photograph by Leong Chian Yee]

Lee Geok Cheng expressed that through teaching of Jing Si Aphorisms, she learnt to look at things differently and be empathetic with children. Her relationship with children is always harmonious. [Photograph by Leong Chian Yee]
 
 
Ou Ming Hua (1st from right), a Federal Superintendent, also a member of Tzu Chi Teachers’ Association, has strived for better educational methods after encountering Jing Si Aphorisms teaching method in 1996. [Photograph by Leong Chian Yee]
 
Parent Li Li Jing learnt from Ng See Seong’s sharing that effective communication was through praise not blame. She would try to understand the inner world of her child and hope to improve their strained relationship. [Photograph by Ng Min Hui]    

Parent Li Li Jing learnt from Ng See Seong’s sharing that effective communication was through praise not blame. She would try to understand the inner world of her child and hope to improve their strained relationship. [Photograph by Ng Min Hui]