Meet our teachers: Marco from Peru, William from Tanzania, and Vladilen from Yakutia
20 October 2021, Wednesday

Today we would like to introduce to you three teachers from different parts of the world who have one thing in common, a desire to share their knowledge with others. Our guests here are: Marco Gamarra from Peru, William Sewando from Tanzania and Vladilen Moskvitin from Yakutia. Each of them became a teacher for different reasons, but they share a love for teaching and helping their pupils.

Marco Gamarra began teaching back when he was a college student, offering university preparatory courses for school kids.

Marco: I have recently graduated from the National Technological University of Lima Sur with a degree in systems engineering. I'm currently doing an internship. As I have always dreamt of being a teacher, now in my spare time I teach programming to orphaned children from La Casa Hogar Corazón de Jesús. In my country, programming is heavily underrated. BeginIT is an excellent opportunity for young people to build a future career. A teacher needs to have a lot of patience as not all children are the same. In my case, they are young children in a family-style home who have suffered abuse, domestic problems, and many other things that affect their daily lives. I believe there are no stupid people, we are all born with a blank mind.

Sometimes there are kids who don't have a good foundation, and there are teachers who don't know how to explain things and overlook these points. This really hinders the children's development because we can't move forward with the existing gaps in the way. That's why we need to have a lot of patience with children and learn to understand them. Just as everywhere else, on Teachers’ Day in Peru children traditionally honour their teachers or give them a small gift as a token of appreciation for their hard work.

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William Sewando has been working in this field for a long time and plans to do charity work in future, helping underprivileged children who have limited opportunities to learn and develop.

William: I've been teaching for 17 years now. I decided to become a teacher because I wanted to help people. Teaching is a very noble profession that helps to shape the character and future of the pupil. The BeginIT project helps children to improve their academic performance, acquire creative thinking skills, and develop a better understanding of how things work.

The difficulties I experience as an educator include limited teaching supplies and the lack of financial and material resources. In Tanzania, we need charitable assistance to improve the quality of education through technology. We need to keep up with the times and teach children what they will need to know in their future lives. I would like to further develop my skills in this area and continue to support projects like BeginIT.

My greatest professional achievement is teaching kids who have no idea what programming is all about, watching their progress, and ultimately their emerging ability to write code on their own. I'm proud of that and this work motivates me a lot. On Teachers’ Day in Tanzania, warm greetings and thanks are extended to teachers through radio and television broadcasts, as well as through a host of events set up in our honour. I wish my fellow educators and project participants the best of luck in their daily endeavours.

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Vladilen Moskvitin, based in the Namsky district in Yakutia, regularly participates with his pupils in various hackathons and robotics contests, his team being a winner of multiple prizes and awards, and he believes that the ultimate result is the main motivation for his young charges.

Vladilen: I have been working as a computer science teacher for 12 years now. I decided to join the profession after I did my first internship as a school teacher in my 3rd year of university and I loved it. I embarked on my career as a computer science teacher at my home school, i.e. Khamagatta Sakha-French Lyceum. And since there were not enough hours of computer science, I led courses in robotics, which later began to be taught to children more seriously. The accomplishments of the children I teach are what keeps me moving forward. Motivation is the most important thing for the learning process. Pupils are motivated by the outcome of the competitions whatever it may be. Why are the competitions important? Because they provide a hands-on learning experience and let the children apply the knowledge gained in the classroom.  

The BeginIT project is a great opportunity for early career guidance for children, which is a very good thing. As in all rural areas, the difficulties we encounter are primarily due to poor equipment and facilities, such as outdated computers, slow Internet speeds, and inability to get some parts for our projects. For example, the Internet speed is so slow that sometimes you have to wait 15 minutes or more to connect to the training platform. The launch of distance learning came with its own challenges when it comes to courses in robotics. That made it impossible to perform assembly tasks using a construction kit. I'm also concerned about the lack of live communication with children. This notwithstanding, we don’t let it get us down and we do everything we can to grow and move forward. I wish you the best of luck with going after your goals and achieving what your heart desires.

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Interestingly, all of the three educators introduced here consider patience and encouragement to be the rule number one in the teaching profession. We extend a big thank you to our teachers for contributing to the success of our pupils and striving for excellence, helping our young charges to find their own way in life.

Our teachers are the most essential part of the project, without whom we would not be able to communicate our values and help children.