Education is where one receives knowledge about our surroundings and allows us to achieve successful careers, however, my experience with education did not seem that way. As a young student, I’ve always struggled and despised the subject of math. I was always placed in after school programs due to my low scores and had a hard time understanding problems. Soon my teachers would become frustrated furthermore angry with my lack of cooperation which led me to feel dispirited about learning. With all these negative learning struggles I’ve had with my teachers, it would make me question why I was trying to excel in education when I’m not even sufficient at it.
When I was in 6th grade I would always dislike going to my math class due to this one teacher named Mrs. Pistachio. She would always find a way to call me to answer a question and would be successful in making me feel worthless when I would get it wrong. Needless to say, I despised this teacher and tried to make myself indivisible in her class as much as possible. I remember clearly a horrible event I had which I’ll never erase from my memory. I was in my math class taking a test that I haven’t studied for. The test looked simple and easy, yet I still had no idea how I was going to solve these problems. I was screaming internally at myself for not studying and was so angry I just gave up and wrote whatever I thought of. I remember nervously walking upfront of the class to hand the test to my teacher which she took and skimmed through aggressively. She then dramatically laughed and threw the test on the floor saying, “Oh that was just atrocious. “Everyone then started laughing with her while I just wanted to crawl in a corner and hide from everyone. I’ve never felt so embarrassed and unworthy until that day. I kept telling myself that she was just a horrible evil person exaggerating how bad I did but deep down I knew it was my fault for not putting in enough effort to learn. Although this event had prompted me to feel discouraged, I still wanted to improve my weaknesses.
After taking in all the cruel statements my teacher had said to me, I decided on sharpening my learning skills by reviewing every chapter we learned in class. To be frank, it was troublesome to learn and teach myself these complex materials so instead, I decided to participate in the free tutoring offer given by my school. I was anxious about meeting my tutor hoping they were a kind patient person since I didn’t want to deal with another Mrs. Pistachio. Once I met my tutor, Mr.Visico, I was instantly put at ease due to his calm demeanor and tolerance. When he would start reviewing and helping with solving problems, I wouldn’t be scared to answer incorrectly since he didn’t yell at me but rather explained as to why and what would be the correct choice. I noticed how he would always get happy whenever I understood a situation and set me to believe in myself. Slowly day by day I would improve in my weak areas and would start losing my hate for Math and become fairly fond of it instead.
When it was announced there would be another test, I made sure to study like the way Mr. Visico had taught me. I examined all the materials I needed in my exam for a good 7 hours and had only 50 minutes of sleep before going to school. When I took the test, I didn’t feel so nervous since I knew what I was doing and felt confident. Once I handed it over to my teacher to which she scanned over it quickly, gave me a surprising look, and said I did excellently. She even gave me a smile which made me feel proud and delighted. I immediately told Mr.Visico who shared the same reaction but then held a gloomy expression on his face while explaining how the tutoring sessions had been canceled. I was very upset upon hearing the news but Mr.Visco convinced me of how much I improved and how I could do this on my own.
I had lost contact with Mr.Visico since that day but it never stopped me from being more positive and sharper when learning a difficult unit and remembering the kind, motivational words said by him. Once entering my freshman year of high school, I had gotten terrible news about Mr.Visico. He had been extremely sick the past few years and sadly passed away. I remember feeling so sad and remorseful for not letting him know how much he had influenced me on being a better student. I make sure whenever I feel like giving up, I’ll remember the kind uplifting statements Mr.Visico has told me and continue working hard and never quitting when it gets too difficult.
With all these harsh experiences with education, oddly enough it doesn’t make me want to give up but instead strives for a better result. Although I felt worthless whenever my teacher would point out my flaws, it showed me the consequence of not putting in effort or working hard. Stephon Hobson says in his story “The Caged Bird Prevails”, “Once tired of being insecure of my lack of reading skills, I promised myself that this was something I would conquer.” This shows how the tough experiences faced can make you aspire to control them. This can reveal how experiences with education will always be a way of overcoming difficult obstacles that mold one character like myself for the future.