A kindergarten teacher takes the lead!

It was this very kind kindergarten teacher, Ms Jerusha, who wrote to me yesterday and told me this morning that my open letter to the Minister of Education was actually published in FMT on 15th December 2022. That’s one day after I sent it!

The FMT article: https://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/top-lifestyle/2022/12/15/the-need-for-humane-education-in-school-curricula/

Ms Jerusha and her school has graciously given me consent to publish her letter. I think her letter will inspire other teachers to follow in her lead to introduce humane education as a part of their own school curricula!

Here it is:

Dear AnimalCare, 

Attention: Dr. Chan Kah Yein, 

Allow me to congratulate you in how brilliant was the letter that you wrote to our new education minister Fadhlina Sidek and the deputy education minister in regards to on why cultivating kindness begins at home and crucially at “SCHOOL” which I couldn’t agree more. 

The FMT article: https://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/top-lifestyle/2022/12/15/the-need-for-humane-education-in-school-curricula/

I also agree with you and share the same thoughts that when we tap into children’s natural affinity and love for animals, it can foster  pro social behavior starting in the classroom. You mentioned in your request to consider introducing  curricula lessons on how to care for animals for primary and secondary schools but I wanted to accelerate it by asking your advice… could it possibly start from early as 3 years old? 

I’m Jerusha a preschool teacher from Q-dees Kota Damansara Selangor and I’m really wanting to emphasize for the National Pet day this 11th April 2023 in wanting to give a good educational yet fun learning exposure to my little 3years old children and I was thinking, why don’t I  communicate with AnimalCare to see how we can make this happen. 

With your great expertise as a teacher yourself for decades and still with the love for education, I really hope that I can have this chance in asking you a favor,if you will be caring to come over to our Kindie on the 11th April 2023 (Tuesday) Time: 9am to give some lesson tips and advice to my 3 years old children’s of how to care for their pets. I’m just trying my best to see with my own effort if I could find the right person and your presence will mean a lot personally to me and the School. 

I hope there is no major fee to pay as I’m just a preschool teacher who is going the extra mile but maybe I could do something very small like contributing pet food if that works? 

I don’t know if our funding will get us (Q-dees Tadika Mewah Mutiara, Kota Damansara) a certificate or a digital cert in which I’m hoping that my Class which goes by the name Nightingale will be able together with me and the school to have the honor to earn a meaningful certificate from your organization as a form of participation. 

Thank you in advance and hope to hear soon.

Sincerely, 
Jerusha

I replied that there is definitely no charge for giving a talk to the children. However, I cannot make it because I’m babysitting Jayden and traveling with him is difficult now because he is not too keen to sit in the baby car seat for too long.

As for at what age one can start humane education for children? The moment they are born! Jayden starting mingling with cats at age 3 months when we babysat him in our house.

However, I will be giving suggestions to Ms Jerusha on what activities can be introduced for humane education for her children, particularly for the animal protection component. To be humane is to be kind. Children learn kindness because we are kind to them, to begin with. Later, they learn by example watching us being kind to others. There is so much we can “teach” children by example. Ryan now recycles in his house. He knows which materials should be placed into the recycling bin. Jayden feeds our porch cats and plays with our cats. He even tries to free the cats when they are placed in a carrier to be taken to the vet! So even in a kindy, there’s so much the teacher can lead by example, through the practices and activities in the kindy. 

Kudos to Ms Jerusha and Q-dees Tadika Mewah Mutiara for taking the lead!!

I’m so glad my letter reached out!! The minister might not have time to look into it, but my hope had always been that it would reach out to other people (what I call, we, the ordinary rakyat who can do extraordinary things once we set our hearts and minds to it!).

Jayden, our one year-old street cat feeder!

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