Comprehensive School №31
I exist by what I think... and I can't stop myself from thinking
By the Student Of the 10th Form
The Teacher Is I.A. Segina
“It’s not enough to know something,
It’s necessary to apply this knowledge.
It’s not enough to want something,
It’s important to do something.”
The history of Kuzbass is the integral part of the big and glorious history of our Great Motherland. To know the history of the native land means to be able to appreciate its past, to love its present, every day to make your own contribution to construction of new life.
Our Land is called Kuznetskey basin – Kuzbass. In 1842 Russian geologist and historian P. A. Chihucherv suggested this name in honor of the first town of our region. The nature of Kuzbass is rich and generous. Every inhabitant even schoolchildren must protect it and make the most efficient use of its treasure. It’s our primary task.
Everybody coming in Kuzbass could discover not only industrial landscapes but wonderful, unique and original beauty of our nature. Colossal supplies of coal, iron minerals and buildings materials are hidden in the interior of our land.
Visited our school museum I’ve known that geographical investigations of the territory of Kuzbass have an ancient history which is rooted in the distant past.
Hunters lived in the Caucasus and Altai came here about 30 thousand years ago. Treasure of stone things discovered near the village Ail on the territory of the Gornaya Shoriya on the bank of the river Kondoma is the convincing and visual evidence that people lived in this district at the distant past.
As they say in Latin, “Homo locum ornat, non locus hominem”. There are many such people in our town. During an excursion at the school museum devoted outstanding persons of Kuzbass I’ve known about O. M. Kovaleva. She is a pedagogue and a representative of the teacher dynasty in the third generation.
At that time I couldn’t suppose the story would have its own continuation. It was the late of autumn. There was a heavy fall of snow in the night. It was quite evening and gentle melancholy. When I was looking through the window I would like to crack my window and take a long breath of fresh air. An ordinary intensive day came to the end. I couldn’t watch television or read my favourite book because I was thinking about the colossal teacher dynasty. Total seniority of their family was 146 years. I was impressed by this fact.
Now I think that such worthy of respect people are pride of Kuzbass. Materials of the school museum about this remarkable family seemed to me dull and boring. I haven’t felt warm-heartedness; furthermore I have some questions on which I’d like to get answers. I believe that Mrs. Kovaleva would like to take part in my exclusive interview with pleasure. So I’ve decided it could be very useful experience for my future profession of a journalist.
My First Exclusive Interview
Mrs. Kovaleva, I’ve learned the information about pedagogical dynasty which you represent with great interest. Unfortunately there are only boring biographical facts, poor chronological information. I’d like to look at your friendly sparkling eyes. It may well be that you allow me to have a look at your soul. So, if you don't mind I’d like to ask you some questions.
- Could you tell me how you have become a pedagogue? Teaching is “difficult hereditary occupation” for you or…? Will you formulate, please, your own professional philosophy?
- Someone has said in jest that it’s important to be born in due time and in the necessary family. I have just guessed right time and place!
Everything started in the first half of the 20th century. My grandfather worked as a head master at the Altai rural school. He taught history. My grandmother was a teacher at the primary school in Kiselevsk. Before my mother worked as a German teacher in the village Nizhniy Kolar she had completed the courses of foreign languages. My sister was a head of studies at the secondary school in Plotnikovo. That’s why the most long-expected holiday for our family was not a birthday and even New Year’s Day but it was the First September.
It turned out, that occupations can be passed on from generation to generation. Today I am a teacher but I can’t do differently. In my opinion the teacher is a very capacious word; it’s a high human duty. He has to be tolerant of the children mistakes and understand them but just he should be exacting himself. Sometimes he must say himself that he is an ignoramus and be containing self-criticism. Everything makes a man improve. The teacher must bring up not only a well educated personality but just a happy one in his creative constructive labour, in his spiritual searches and in his family.
- Could you explain me what the school means for you?
- The school is my native home where I go hurriedly every morning. I always would like to have good smiles, friendly support, mutual understanding for all at this home. Often I ask myself,” What things should I teach my students? To write, to read, to count…” Not only these activities. I teach them to love, to understand a really new book of nature, independence in thinking and cognition, form abilities to work purposeful and help classmates. It’s a key condition for me in order that students gone home would like to meet with me again. Day after day I lead my schoolchildren on the path of knowledge, on which they study to tell the difference between good and evil. But forever I learn openness, devotion and love with them.
I love my school very much, treat with respect to children and believe in great future of my profession. I always remember the famous phrase of I.A. Komenskey,”Our occupation is the best one under the sun”.
- You have already worked many years at the school, what things are the most valuable of your job in your opinion?
- Yes, we are together a lot of years: my young sages catching all sounds of the world, going step by step to the top of knowledge and I. They gather strength, little man, trying in increasing frequency to stand on theirs tiptoes in order to zoom… but where? They haven’t still known. It’s important to zoom, it’s important to understand that “I can do”! And I expose my hands and shoulders. I know that experience is an attempt to do mistakes, disabuse! But you need pass along the way!
I’ve had everything during these working years: gladness tears and eye water of trouble, happiness of discovery and series of misfortunes. But I was recompensed many times. I would be happy to communicate with children, see their radiant smiles and such trusting looks!
- I believe it’s not that simple but you try hard to increase our knowledge. Do you know what teacher art means?
- Formerly A.S. Makarenko compared children to flowers, and teachers to gardeners. “You should bring up people carefully and watch their perfection closely. In exactly the same way a gardener cultivates a chosen fruit tree. You should be interested in fruits more than aroma. Let’s be gardeners!”
After these words I imagined that I would have a watering-can and a scraper. I would water, turn up and weed soil, prune superfluous branches. So I would create conditions in order that fruits would be tastier, flowers would be fragrant, fill with aroma whole world…But unfortunately it turned out, that I didn’t have effect. Why?
I’ve remembered the fairy tail “Alice in Wonderland” by L. Carroll, where Alice has alighted on speaking flowers in a blooming garden and known flowers which grow “on soft like down beds all the time sleep”. So perhaps it’s the right answer to the grand question of many pedagogues. Children have to participate in the process of cognition carving firm “terra incognita”.
- I think probably among teachers like among people of other occupations there are accidental people. In what is difference of the true pedagogue appealed to “the difficult profession” in your opinion?
- An ancient wisdom reads as follows, “Three ways lead to tops of knowledge: the easiest way is the one of blind imitation, the bitterest way is the one of personal experience and the noblest way is the one of reflection”. No doubt it’s as easy as pie to imitate. There is no need to be a man of great intellect. While there is need to have particular qualities to reflect – no ordinariness, the creative method of attack, innovation and above all it’s “charisma”.
As long ago as 5oo years ago prior to B.C. Chinese philosophy Confucius repeated constantly “learning without thoughts is useless”. These words are correct today, at the beginning of the new millennium.
I am sure of the true pedagogue must go on the most difficult way, but on the noble one of cognition and lead by the hand his students. The most important pedagogic task is to set a child on the right track in such a way he has a sensation of strength like a green sprout carving thickness of asphalt. You know a person is able to live in dignity in the extremely changing outward things, think creatively in order that knowledge coming today will be the working motivation for tomorrow.
- Could you tell me, please, more detail about your stay at the official governor reception.
- On the 7th of October in 2004 there was the official governor reception in honour of teachers. The governor A.G. Tuleev congratulated heartily honorary guests, said about activity of the Administration of Kuzbass aimed at the improvement of life and work conditions and fringe benefits for teachers. Then distinguished teachers were rewarded with name medals, premiums and costly presents. It was the unforgettable trip for me.
I thank my sister which has collected the materials about my family. I as the representative of the teacher dynasty was rewarded with the governor diploma and premium but my daughter got a personal computer.
- Thank you very much Mrs. Kovaleva for your interview and unusual description. In my opinion our lively talk proved very interesting and cognitive.
By the way Lena Kovaleva, the Mrs. Kovaleva’s daughter, is my classmate and then who knows, perhaps the famous teacher dynasty will continue.
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