بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيْمِ
Prelude! Months ago, I came across an article about the power of personalized notes from a teacher on one of her students, saving a soul of wanting to end her life. This true story deeply touched my heart and strongly engraved in my memory. Why? I identified three reasons why these Personalized Notes matter to me. First and foremost, I am also an educator like Darass, the young teacher in this story. This story makes me realized that, in touch with a caring soul and act on it, one could be saving other peoples’ lives. Second, as an educator myself, I have endless opportunities to meet young people who hail from various walks of life with a broad range of academic performance. People from the academic world, sometimes, extremely care only the academic performance of students and the performance of educators. They overlooked that students nor educators are robots. All of us have lives. We have ups and downs. When we’re in a good life, we love to share. But when we’re in the down life we (might) need help or at least kind ears to share the story without prejudice or a pat on the shoulder. Third and finally, I am a human too. Sometimes, I do feel that life is hard to bear but chose to keep it a secret and prison myself in a damp dungeon. However, at the same time, I also wish that a right person–someone with a genuine kind soul, would reach out and pull me out from the self-prison.
What is Personalized Notes? Personalized notes is a tool in the Interpersonal Communication that could help to facilitate one to materialize his/her self-transformation. Why these Personalized Notes special? These notes are unique to learners. According to Darass (in the story), ‘… how each of us needs to realize that every human being is unique.’ These notes contain heartfelt messages how much he/she is loved, missed and appreciated. Also, they could also contain heartfelt messages on the strengths and potentials for successes in life.
As an educator, I believe this tool is a treasure to inspire a learner to realize his/her potential. Sometimes, young learners need a little bit push from their educators, like “you can do this, I believe in you.” Since educators are authority figures and role models in young learners, words from them–spoken or written, are significant to them. Every word utters from educators’ lips or pen or keyboard matters to these young learners.The same way, one or more words inspire them to make achievements, ugly chosen words could tarnish or kill their spirit.
What Personalized Notes can do to learners? Crafting personalized notes are meant to be inspirational and motivational strategies that promote positive self-esteem development in learners. These notes contain heartfelt messages that trigger and nurture deeper awareness of how important they are, their contributions’ matters, their strengths make a difference, as well as their future potentials and achievements. These handwritten messages are believed would be able to boost the self-esteem and fuel energy for persons to strive for their future success. Moreover, for those who are in a deep struggle with conflicts, these messages would be able to gently reach out to a ‘drowned person’ to swim up to the surface of hope.
How do these Personalized Notes work? These heartfelt messages must be handwritten in StickOn Note for instance, by the educator to give a powerful personalized effect. But most importantly, before that, the educator needs to personally get to know each of their students in a meaningful way.
When to hand in the Personalized Notes to your learners? Knowing the best times to give the notes are also essential to fully realize the power of Personalized Notes. The educator can write the notes to a student in crisis as what Darass has done. Darass also handed her personalized notes before her students taking their final exam. In addition to what Darass has practice, I would say, regular feedbacks on the students’ performance before they sit for their final exams, would also be one of the best times to pass the personalized notes.
In general, I believe that ‘the when question’ is referring to at any points that an educator can convince or persuade the learners to change or consolidate their decision-makings for positive outcomes in their lives. Departing from this statement, I believe academic performance is not the only thing that matters learners or students lives.
How I could make a change with Personalized Notes? I will craft personalized notes to my learners and those who I care and love, InsyaAllah. I am going to write them messages that trigger their imagination of their successful future and nurture their strengths to overcoming barriers in learning and struggling life. I would never know whom lives I would be able to save unless I commit myself to this simple gesture, writing a Personalized Notes to someone lives that matters.