I believe that there are no coincidences in life. You plan, you execute, you get something out of it. But if something outside of your plan happens? Then I see it as someone else’s plan happening. I do, however, believe that in life when the right plans are happening, you get to meet incredible people and have great chances. I feel like my life is full of great plans since it has led me to meet a lot of incredible people who got me from just a kindergarten teacher to a kindergarten teacher with many things in store! And to think that most of them happen in virtual world a.k.a social media!
For me it started in 2009 when I went to Cambridge Day in Jakarta. I did plan to gain some knowledge but I didn’t think that it would expand beyond my expectations. There I met Chuck Sandy. We didn’t talk much but he invited all the attendees of his presentation to connect with him through Facebook. I did! From there I got to know more people in the teaching industry. Chuck introduced me to Barbara Sakamoto via Twitter, where she encouraged me to take part in #ELTChat . My plan back then was simple, to make new friends who would share more about teaching and their lives around it. Through #ELTChat I met James Taylor. Here is where the story grows.
On one of the #ELTChats we talked about Dogme teaching. I was very intrigued by the fact that it was sort of what I was doing in my Montessori class, though they had their differences. I wrote about it on my FB status. To my surprise, James read it! He said that if I was willing to conduct a little research on it, he’d be willing to let me write a guest post on his blog! I was very keen on trying though not sure about writing it, but I did it because I felt like that was a good opportunity for me to seek more of what I could do. James Taylor did more than just give me the platform to start something. He gave me three blog posts to write about my findings on Applying Dogme teaching in a Montessori Classroom. I never thought that he’d trust me to do something for his blog, but the fact that he did must mean I executed my plan correctly! James was also the first person who believed that I could present this in a workshop, not only as written material. For me that was pretty challenging, but I thought, if i plan it correctly, I could pull it off. James also sent me a great video as part of my 2013 presentation on how social media can change your teaching life to the better.
Another amazing person was Vicky Loras. She helped me to get my writing about Dogme in Montessori published in the ETAS Journal Spring 2012 Edition. To this day I have never met Vicky in person, but how we connect through social media is amazing! Vicky interviewed me for one of the episodes of the #ELTChat podcast and I must say that experience was something I will never forget!
Barbara Sakamoto is also another huge door opener for me! She trusted me to present with her at 2012 JALT though I still had not met her in person! She also opened the door for me by inviting me to be an associate for iTDi (International teachers development institute) and for someone who was just teaching kindergarten, that meant a lot to me. From there, Barb has continued to be a great part of my life, both professionally and personally.
Of course those experiences didn’t come overnight, but like I said, when you plan things correctly, and execute them nicely, you’ll see something in the end.
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