by Amina Tumi, 32 yrs, London, Hairdressing Salon owner
I feel like I have been living in a box – with all of my unresolved issues going around and around but not really going anywhere or getting anywhere with life or myself. I have been experiencing life in a way that has not taken on board whether I am truly living the real me, and this brings up questions.
I never thought I could write or even read as I always believed I was dyslexic. This thought held me back in many ways as I had labelled myself as being less than others because I was not as clever or intelligent. What is true intelligence anyway?
I would feel I was not good enough if I could not read a word or spell in school… or after leaving school as a young lady. I remember being in a restaurant (on a date in my teens) and not being able to read the menu properly and feeling like I was really stupid and that something was wrong with me.
What I have been told (and seen as someone with dyslexia) is that the condition makes it difficult for the person to learn the same way as others, and they have difficulty in reading. I can look back now and say that I would get so nervous when being asked to read – that I would not be able to see what was written clearly on the paper – and I would get so jumbled when trying to express the words.
HAVING DYSLEXIA AND THE PRESSURE TO BE AT THE HIGHER LEVEL
Why is it that our society puts pressure on sensitive, very feeling-based children, like I was, to be a certain way in the world – and that if you don’t measure up in that way according to society, then you really stand out as not being good enough?
Could it be that society has a ‘perfect student’ syndrome going on, one that you need to aspire to and get to and feel like a failure if you don’t? In school the kids would say you are dumb if you are in the bottom classes and that to need help from teachers means that you must be pretty stupid. What about how those kids feel when being judged in this way? What support is on offer for them?
I know that feeling this way doesn’t end in school, in fact, it feels as though it is just the start. I was in the ‘middle’ when it came to class level, not the labelled ‘stupid’ class, but not the ‘intelligent’ one, either. I found there to be more students at this ‘middle’ level but I also felt that I was only there by the skin of my teeth, and that was a pressure that I lived with on a daily basis.
At the age of 15 I got into hairdressing and I loved it. I was not looked at as being ‘less’, and it was a more practical skill where I felt in my element. However, I still had this dyslexia issue hanging over my head. Whenever we had to read or do any theory in class, the anxiety would come up and I remember reading something out to my team and stuttering and stumbling so much that no one could even look at me. They just looked away in embarrassment for me, and I felt ashamed and so very stupid after that.
I had taken on a forced way of being that really damaged me as a child because I was not left to develop at the pace that was right for me. Worse, I was made to feel inadequate for not being where others were by being put in lower classes.
Why are we put under so much pressure as children to be at the ‘higher’ level? And is the ‘level’ we are pressured to be at a true way of being anyway?
I remember having a home teacher a few evenings to help me, and although this was only a couple of times it really started to build my confidence. I realised for a moment that “I can do this”. However, as my mum was unable to keep this going, I slowly went back to how I was, but that marker stayed with me – that I just needed more time, but also to have a teacher help you in a way that makes you feel understood. This was huge for me.
DECONSTRUCTING THE PERCEPTIONS AROUND DYSLEXIA AND BEING STUPID
I have and still am in the process of, deconstructing the false me that has taken on ideals and beliefs that I am stupid somehow – and this has added to my feeling that I have been made to please others by what I do, say and think… and of course, how I look.
I feel as a result of the attitudes and perceptions around dyslexia and perceived learning difficulties and the pressure I felt to ‘perform’, that I was robbed of my true loving nature. It would have been amazing if one of my teachers had asked me ‘How are you doing as it looks like you are struggling a little?’
How is it that we as the adults can choose not to truly acknowledge and connect to the children who are very clearly struggling around us? What are we not wanting to see? Is it that we don’t know how as adults to truly support these children with a different learning style? Is it perhaps that our schooling system doesn’t currently accommodate the children that learn in a slightly different way?
What if we treated everyone as equal at all times, no matter the age or abilities, but also had a deep understanding where one is at any given time? Would we then be allowed to grow up and be the unique, amazing, sensitive, playful, gorgeous little things we truly are?
241 thoughts on “Pressure, Perceptions, Dyslexia and Me”
As I read this blog, I resonated with everything you have written. In this current job I’m in, I question ‘what is true intelligence anyway?’. I’m comparing myself to other colleagues I work with and how slow I am in the uptake of what the job requires of us and, the pace we are to do the things we are supposed to do it in.
I think I have typing dyslexia! I hear the constant clicking of key boards, as though we are in a race. And here I am, my fingers unable to spell in that environment. Yet when I’m not keeping up with the expectations, my typing skills are reasonable.
I understand the label we take on as I’ve felt that imposition and in that inheritance, we are in the constant fight. We know there is a worldly intelligence we’re part of, and there’s this other intelligence that is constantly knocking on our door, saying if we are not part of it, then the not good enough pops its ugly head. IF, we allow it.
It is a working progress, but something I’m enjoying to get to know – the true me. A journey we should all be yearning/wanting to go on, because the journey I used to be in was never it.
How important is it that we value a person for their qualities and the gorgeousness of who they are at all times: “What if we treated everyone as equal at all times, no matter the age or abilities, but also had a deep understanding where one is at any given time? Would we then be allowed to grow up and be the unique, amazing, sensitive, playful, gorgeous little things we truly are?”
I agree Henrietta, what if we valued everyone for what they bring. Within each of us, there is this essence that is unique to the individual but in this uniqueness when we are together, we form the one. It kind of feels like that every piece of jigsaw puzzle, is essential to making the whole piece. One cannot do without the other. Our lives are no different.
I have never had dyslexia with words, but I have had and still sometimes have dyslexia with numbers. This means that I can reverse numbers in a sequence and not realise it. It also means that I needed more time and some extra support with maths. And yes I did and still can feel a little slow or stupid when there is a time frame placed upon me to do a calculation of somekind – for example when calculating the change for a person after a purchase they have made – I am generally great at this but if you ask me to speed it up beyond my rhythm, then I am not able to do the task that otherwise is so simple. There is a different rhythm that I need to honour with this and that, I have learned is OK and not stupid.
Amina thank you for this open and honest account of how you experienced things growing up and the pressures we put upon ourselves in addition to the pressures that are loaded upon us by parents, peers, schools etc. When allowed to be, a person blossoms.
It is almost as if the teachers get ‘off’ on the speed that the so called smart students get to the answers and thus they applaud them while shutting down the rest of us? As you have shared Amina, we all learn at a different pace and thus schooling should be accommodating in understanding this and bring in systems that will support everyone equally.
We all learn at a different pace, but we also learn in different ways, we are unique.
Absolutely Lorraine, an old friend who was a teacher got the student to teach in his classes and by the end of the year the whole class had gone half way into the next years work and all were getting amazing grades.
So when everyone is on the same page we all benefit, and thus can become the “amazing, sensitive, playful, gorgeous little things we truly are”!!!
That narrow-mindedness in the system is just a sifter, definitely not nurturing or educational in a real sense. It has no interest in where everyone is at and what everyone’s unique expression is, and bringing the best in everyone.
If the education system read this question and actually followed through, it would revolutionise education and learning, “What if we treated everyone as equal at all times, no matter the age or abilities, but also had a deep understanding where one is at any given time?” I have two teenagers and see the struggle close up of them questioning who they are based on their ability to learn, do exams and assignments. Like I remember myself, saying things like “I am so dumb and stupid because I can’t do this!” Or actually being told by an adult that I am. It’s debilitating if we allow ourselves to believe it. It’s all fake and not true… we all bring so much through our beingness to the world and that is what needs to be appreciated, not what grades we get.
Beautiful Amina, I love that – question is super spot on: ‘Is it that we don’t know how as adults to truly support these children with a different learning style?’
That begs the question, are we willing to dig deeper as parents,teachers and surrounding to change our way of living that is able to actually support people with different learning styles ; that is not fragmented, without judgement and truly open to understand their way?
Yes, it is important to understand people’s different learning styles, as well as what may be affecting their ability to learn.
There is no one size fits all, and yet we still strive for this in our education systems, and so many get left behind because of it … it exposes that our education system is about having people fit into pre-defined boxes and not in fact about meeting each student for who they are and being with and working with them to assess how they need to learn and how we can support them to be all they are in life. This is the change we need in our education system.
Beautifully said Monica – the one size fits all approach does not work for the majority and in fact it then alienates the very people who hold the qualities we all need to learn from as well.
Living in a plane of life that is all about going round and round and getting nowhere, our life is not about getting somewhere either, but about the quality that we are able to construct, represent and hold in the body.
In growing up with dyslexia myself, I was told by an elder within my family, that I am not stupid, I just look at the world spherically, while others look at it linearly. And she would go on to say, that this means that I get to have a different view of the world and so my contributions to life are very important, because I can inspire the linear thinking people to step outside of their set ways and to see life with a different perspective, as this is how we can all help and support each other – by not holding back who we are and what we each have to truly share.
Wow Shami, imagine if all children were held in this understanding from when they were born? We would have a very very different society…one that appreciated and embraced all, without any delineation through how a person learns.
It’s incredible how a title like “dyslexia” can shape our whole life in the way we think about ourselves. I think you nailed it when you said the key thing we are missing is understanding. It seems like if we don’t understand something we apply a label to it. What if instead of applying titles or labels we started to apply a much greater understanding to people and what is really going on for them?
Meg this is great what you have shared – and so true too in that in our world we can just push aside that which we do not understand and just give it a label rather than work with it and know that we are all the same inside.
Our current education system has many flaws, it doesn’t allow anyone to feel enough unless they shutdown their multidimensionality and sell out and become ‘intelligent’. Serge Benhayon lives in a way that allows him to access Universal Intelligence and wisdom – now that is my idea of how we would be raising our children and teaching them in the Education system to remain who they truly are.
And once a child learn a certain principle then they can share it with the others within the class and they all have a great time learning and no one gets left behind. And the thing is by the end of year the whole class can be half way through next years curriculum.
The way of our current world does not foster or appreciate who we are and instead pits us against each other in what we can do. Yes, it puts pressure on us and many of us do not like that, but we have also taken advantage of the very same model to somehow relate to our ‘worth’ to compensate the emptiness we feel – it’s just the same one coin. Amazing how the education system is designed to train us to assimilate to this unnatural way of being from every angle.
I love that you are sharing how dyslexia often appears when the person needs a different way of learning that is not so readily available in class? We put people in boxes instead of looking at how everyone needs a different style of teaching and learning which just makes so much more sense. By putting people in boxes we ignore this fact and make the person wrong, even though we have to look at the system that might be wrong.
Not being able to read and being stupid is a link we make way too quick. If we just measure ourselves on our ability to read we are missing out on all the beauty we have to offer even if they cannot read, it does not change who we are on the inside.
What if dyslexia expose the difficulty of very sensitive people to ‘read’ and ‘talk’ the world as it is presented to us? What if this reveal the fact that they are holding on to something bigger they feel is not in the picture and cannot jump into the swimming pool and let go what they know is true?
How many people in the past have been left behind in the classroom and seen as less because they had a particular learning difficulty that was not acknowledged for them – let alone them being given support for. As a consequence of this, how many have grown up and lived with this shame of feeling left behind and less and thus have not been able to live to their potential as an adult. This is making me wonder how much we have it back to front – that what we should actually feel ashamed of is the leaving others behind, and not that they need to learn a different way.
It is important to remember that we are all equal, we just have different ways of learning, ‘What if we treated everyone as equal at all times, no matter the age or abilities, but also had a deep understanding where one is at any given time.’
Amina it’s an important article you have shared here as it’s a very cold way to grade children’s value based on what’s deemed as intelligence. It’s sets up a pecking order and a foundation for comparison and competition in life, instead of equality and collaboration. What we learn doesn’t equip us for life anyway, it may help with work and career which is essential, but what’s the point if ones self worth is low and our lives are lived in disconnection to the truly lovely being within?
A true marker of intelligence is the ability to read life with our heart and not solely our mind. Our job is to live true to this and be the reflection the world needs to see in order for us as a whole to make changes that support the expression of this.
And when we teach our class rooms to teach each other it supports everyone expression, and the reflection they are getting is from there fellow students as they workshop there way through the years agenda.
As a kid I was labelled dyslexic, dyspraxsic and Attention Deficit Disorder. Before that my parents were told I’d never pass secondary/high school. And that may have come about had my schooling not changed, both in mainstream education and learning through Universal Medicine that everyone is different and learns in different ways and that sensitivity is to be honoured. I ended up going to university and now I am a prolific writer with no belief that I am stupid or that there’s something wrong with me.
When we label others or ourselves we can come to define ourselves by the label instead of appreciating everything that we are.
Very true Mary and this can apply to any area of our lives. When we are identified by a label there is an attachment we find comfort in to keep us small and contracted and therefore we use it as an excuse to not present our true selves in the world.
Until we really start to know ourselves, we can all feel out of place… We can work really hard to make ourselves fit in, but the truth is, when we do actually start to know with that deep inner knowing, who we are, then we will feel perfectly in place.
The word Dyslexia already comes with an energy of less than/not good enough. It is even used to shrug off a moment of non presence, ie to ‘explain making a mistake’. I did this myself the other day. To do so though does not support our choice to be present and with our bodies. Could this be the key to supporting those who struggle with learning, could supporting them to be present and with their bodies completely change the paradigm of dyslexia and the connotations that we have placed on the word?
This is so needed what you are describing here, as it is something that is so common but seen as below the norm, and that in itself is a contradiction. We meanwhile have so many kids that struggle in school and yet we mark them as learning disabled all the while it should bring us to a full stop and question our education system. Time and perfection and needing to know/learn as much as possible, particularly in younger years, are interferences we allow that have horrible and crippling effects on our children and thus on all of society, as every child grows into the adult that makes society and exactly with the values and beliefs and ideals we have made them to follow.
We are multi-dimension beings, each comprised of both spirit and Soul. In this sense it is interesting to look at how we ‘box ourselves in’ in life. For if we place a ball in a box it does not stop it being a sphere, but it does take on the illusion that there are corners in which to hide its ‘bounce’ and angles that restrict its otherwise spherical nature. It is the same for us.
Recognising that we all learn at our own pace and providing that within school rather than forcing the child to fit a mould would make such a difference and I know that from personal experience as having been labelled a slow learner (dyslexia as a label was not in vogue when I was at school). And I feel if this was applied not just in school but in society in general – respecting an individual for who they are and not what they can or cannot do to conform to a particular expectation – what a different world we would be living in.
‘What is true intelligence anyway?’ – great question Amina. What we have labelled intelligence to be is something that is reserved for certain people who can attain this type of intelligence, with everyone else considered less than. And then we witness theses deemed ‘intelligent’ people behave in ways that are far from ‘intelligent’ and somewhat abusive. There is far more to true intelligence than what we are currently living, as it a quality that we all equally have access to, where the truth in any moment is known through our bodies, and lived as such. This is an intelligence that we are born with, and never leaves us, and fostering and nurturing this from a young age is how we empower our children to know and live in connection to our bodies and the true intelligence that resides therein, that is our natural way of being.
Funny how we can believe something and almost make it a truism (self fulfilling), whereas if we truly feel what is happening then we get a richer experience and realise that a) we are not the bad guy in our own personal drama and b) there is so much we can change through the simple expedient of being who we truly are.
It’s so great to read stories like this that blow the common perception of what ‘smart’ is out the window. What good are our practiced skills if we can’t then use them to connect with people, what then is the point of us all being here if we’re all just robots who can read and write big words? There is sooooo much more to be learnt about true intelligence.
It would make an enormous difference to have more time and space to connect with the young people in our classes at school, to see them for who they are beyond the behaviour.
It is interesting how in our education systems we tend to reward the children who engage with the system most and who do what they are told and do it to a certain standard that pleases us and pleases someone in government who has designed these hoops for our children to jump through. But what if the children who do not engage so well with the system are actually exercising their intelligence more by the fact that they can feel the lack of love and care in the system and the pressure this is placing on them and are actually saying ‘no’ to this imposition rather than enjoining with it?
Thank you Amina for your honest blog here about what it was like to grow up with dyslexia. There must be many children (even many without dyslexia) who feel the same way and get labelled as ‘stupid’ or ‘less intelligent’ when the very definition of intelligence we are using to box these children is flawed to begin with.
Amina I think you speak for many, I too had great difficulty at school, although I loved Maths, English was a subject that caused me many problems, especially reading and spelling, I would spend hours looking words up in the dictionary however you need to know the first two letters and I was always struggling if words began with an e instead if an i, or a ph rather than an f, it seems more simple now than it did, although the difference now is I’m ok with myself to ask if I don’t know, because we can’t all be good at everything.
“What I have been told (and seen as someone with dyslexia) is that the condition makes it difficult for the person to learn the same way as others, and they have difficulty in reading.” If this was truly taken into account for the bigger problem it is in education it would change the delivery of education. But as it stands now we need education and awareness within the teaching of the education system itself however, for now if you are aware make that change yourself and provide the support you require.
There is an enormous pressure on children to be at a certain learning level at school and when they are not, often they are seen as not quite good enough or that there is something wrong. I feel it’s wonderful that schools support children and get the resources that help them learn the most but there is a stigma and a culture around it that needs to be looked at. I remember the annoyance in some teachers and family members eyes when I just didn’t understand something I needed to learn. This would then make it harder because I would be so anxious and nervous to not get it wrong. I also looked at the belief I had that I was stupid, as I heard it so much growing up. Occasionally now if I was to think of doing extra study as an adult I feel a pang of nervousness rise up, however majority of the time I feel a steadiness and confidence in whatever I need to do.
Our education system as it stands is clearly not working, levels of self harm are escalating in schools. Education at present is based on results with a clear lack of truly caring or even loving the individual, doing at the expense of being, and yes I completely agree, ‘Is it perhaps that our schooling system doesn’t currently accommodate the children that learn in a slightly different way?’
I always struggled with any form of English, writing, reading, spelling but didn’t realise why until I was in my 30’s and was treating a patient who described his dyslexia that I realised the similarity. I then understood what was going on for my younger son, and later sat in while he was being assessed for dyslexia, this really was an eye opener, very interesting, and helped me understand my son and self much more.
I was always in the stream of class that was considered intelligent. There was pride in this (from teachers, family and myself) and I was considered better than others. This was the norm for my childhood and it carried on into adulthood. I stuck with the comparison based on intelligence and the value of someone being measured by how smart they were. It was a toxic way to live and took quite a long time to be free of.
It certainly isn’t one size fits all when it comes to learning and we all have different ways of learning that include how long we need to process new information. The current education system does not truly serve us.
It is interesting being in a class of young children and seeing the standards that are set and benchmarks they are to meet. It is as though everyone should be at a certain level and you are either classed as above or below that level. The structure of the system doesn’t allow for anything else.
I was one of those children in the ‘lower’ classes, and for maths I was in the class lower than the lowest – there was three children in this class. When we place boxes on ourselves or others it completely caps any potential growth, the box being of expectations to be or conform to somewhere or something we are not. The more I accept who I am the more I allow that to grow and shine regardless if I can do complicated maths or not because there is so much more focus and appreciation on who I am rather than what I lack that another can bring. I don’t have to deliver everything to get a job done, only appreciate my part and another brings forward the skill I may not have.
Reading this article tonight I find myself pondering on how many children are left affected because, for whatever reason, they don’t find themselves in the ‘smart’ class.
This would mean that over 90% of children are left with a feeling of less than that is likely to be carried into adult life. This is absolutely appalling, the education system as it is not only suppressing a students natural abilities, but is actually fostering separation and ultimately bullying.
Wanting the whole world to conform to a system where everyone is under control is a huge protection. What is the world protecting against? Could it be that if connection with ourselves is something that is being lived, that the illusion of this world has to be exposed, and the pillars of life that have been formulated for the whole world to exist as less than the true fullness of who we are will crumble, and this world and its people could truly return to what is natural? Could it be the power of connection with our heart and our soul means we have to truly own up to the fact that the world that we know as of today, is not working? And with individuals like yourself Amina, who feels her way through life rather than through the conforming of systems, could it be that this reflection is simply not welcomed and is it not true that with the appreciation of our true value, that we are then able to observe what is truth and to keep living it, as it is just natural?
This was a really lovely blog thank you Amina. The education system really can’t cater for how children are, which is naturally aware, sensitive and feeling based. To succeed in school you have to choose a certain way of thinking and that is, busy using recall memory ability, to get good grades on exams, to receive recognition from teachers and parents and this will satisfy as a form of love – but it doesn’t even come close to the amazingness that children already are which we constantly see but always try and put in a box so we don’t have to change our systems and our undeveloped ways!
Yeah, you’ve really made me realise just how ‘normal’ we’ve made the grading thing. I’m blown away by discovering just how much we have sold out to, given our power away to and/or simply accepted. I have measured myself against others my entire life as have the vast majority of fellow men and women, and in that I get to escape the responsibility of appreciating myself which would then offer everyone else an opportunity to do the same, And so we continue to participate in the cycle, until one of us says enough.
“What if we treated everyone as equal at all times, no matter the age or abilities, but also had a deep understanding where one is at any given time?” Great question Amina, what a wonderful world it would be if this was so. As you have pointed out it is our responsibility to live lovingly and truthfully treating All equally; as you have done, thank you.
The loveless ways in which we condemn and treat each other, never seem to amaze me Amina. When you ask: “How is it that we as the adults can choose not to truly acknowledge and connect to the children who are very clearly struggling around us? What are we not wanting to see?”
I would suggest that we are not wanting to go anywhere near the ‘danger zone’ we’ve all permitted to still operate – a ‘zone’ where vulnerability exists, where we have to actually look at the quality in which we inter-relate and support each other… a ‘zone’ where our own ‘fallibilities’ (by outer-judged standards) may themselves be exposed…
We are all protecting ourselves from truly going there and addressing the great evil at play in our way of education, and lack of truly holding and meeting another exactly where he or she stands. We are failing to acknowledge the lack of love inherent in all of this. And without such acknowledgement, we cannot move forward and establish another way – a way where connection comes first and all are held as equal, way before they ‘perform’ or do any such thing…
Well said Victoria. As a humanity we are yet to see our innate divinity first before we see anything else. As such we have developed a habit of focussing on the outer layers that mask such majesty. That is, we see the ‘what is not’ well before we acknowledge and appreciate ‘what is’.
The evils of our education system and pursuit of ‘perfection in attainment’ exposed Amina. There was no preparation for life in what you experienced, only a constant disabling influence.
Thank-you for sharing your words here – I can still feel the ‘protection’ and safety I sought in being the ‘perfect student’, so that I needn’t be so judged… We all need to let such notions go completely…
I agree Victoria, I also experienced the security of being the best in primary school however the effects on my nervous system from a young age to push myself were not healthy, nor was the anxiety that I may drop to what was considered ‘not doing well’ and the accompanying fear that this also meant having no value and being swept to the side. As a child I was desperate to be seen and valued, but what a horrible process the education system introduces where we are reduced to what we know and our ability to retain information, and graded as such, and not valued for being who we are and what that brings to the world. Whether we were top, middle or lower it’s an unnatural and unnecessary stress for children (and adults) to be graded this way.
Trying to learn according to someone else’s pace and schedule, or even our own, where we ‘think we should have got to by now’ is stressful and so makes learning so much harder. We actually stall our own evolution by putting pressure on ourselves to have mastered something or got somewhere. I remember the squashed and squeezed feeling from school, and can see how I used anxiety – fear of not keeping up- to drive and push myself forward, just to stay afloat. It makes sense that we then carry these momentums into adulthood- constantly running to a timetable outside of one’s self and fearing not keeping up. And the not so great effect that this has had on the body.
When we are met with someone who loves and understands us no matter where we’re at, and not trying to make us be where they’d like us to be, suddenly it’s easier to learn – there’s no trying, and the learning flows. The greatest most empowering thing is that we can be this way with ourselves first, giving ourselves permission to make mistakes and learning at our own pace.
Reading to the end, and also reading some of the other comments, I do wonder if dyslexia is a more difficult experience due to the anxiety that is felt with the condition. As it seems that as the anxiety, trust in self and confidence in self is again connected with the issues with dyslexia diminish. Is there a learning here for us all, that through connection, support and understanding, a student that feels this can deal with the problems that dyslexia presents as they know who they are, before the begin to learn.
I am half way through reading this article and something has jumped clear of the page for me. Amina mentions “that if you need help from teachers, you must be pretty stupid.”
This simple sharing triggered in me a sense, understanding of how perfectionism was supported to become such a controlling factor of my life. What if every student feels this in some way and what if we are taught through or own personal senses that to ask for help means there is something wrong with us. What if to counter this we then begin to find ways to pretend to know, so we can be ‘perfect’ students, and we then continue this behavior into aldult hood. Which finds us being judgemental and disconnected from others, as we feel we are stupid, or not good enough if we need help?
It has taken me quite some time to let go and allow others to support me and let go of trying to be perfect.
Could it be that the struggling student is not noticed or acknowledged because it will expose how children are being educated only works for some and not all, thus failing for many children and impeding on their life and ability to learn thereafter?
The pressure children are faced with to be a certain way and I feel it is becoming more intense as I observe my own children is huge. Children are being observed and tested in all other areas in the classroom e.g.how they respond to one another and how they work in groups however I feel the system has some way to go to treat this as equal to the marks on paper. There is so much more to us as children and adults and the way we are with ourselves in life which in my opinion is impossible to make comment by a result on a piece of paper.
The thing is, being good at schoolwork and regarded as the top of the class student doesn’t grant true confidence either. When our doing gets valued while our being remains unappreciated, we know that is not who we are. And the self-betrayal we go into to attain that recognition is deeply felt and gets ingrained.
What I feel on the subject of learning is that when we work together as a group within what ever that setting is, and then we can learn from each other and bring the whole group up to speed. Teachers should just be there to inspirer and set a direction. Those students who get it straight away share with the rest of the group or class so everyone evolves together.
This is why the current school system does not make sense – we are not made to be the same. Yet even though we are all equal when it comes to essence and our energetic ability to connect to everything there is, we still bring a uniqueness that cannot be compared to one another. To me, the current schooling system breeds comparison and doesn’t take into account our uniqueness.
I fully agree Rachael, and many kids and adults are scared by there experience.
Sadly the school system is set up to not accommodate the individual needs of children and truly support them based on the learning style that will allow them to learn what they need to at the pace that is suitable for them. Schools today appear to be set up like a business and if you can’t keep up with the curriculum and learning expectations, there is little accommodation… and we are failing children who, such as yourself, suffer as a result.
I was Dyslexic growing up I can’t really say that I am completely cured, as I had to copy paste the word Dyslexic from this article as I don’t know how to spell it still, haha. Although I have changed and grown an enormous amount through my Studies with Universal Medicine and I am now quite a confident and capable writer and reader. School never offered me this, I always felt a pressure and did not feel good enough academically.
Now I have 5 children and 2 of them seem to have the same learning difficulties as I did. It’s hard to watch them with the same struggles as I had and I am trying to support them the best I can, in a system that does not seem to understand the way they learn.
I still have to look up the spelling so I would say I am fully with you Sarah 🙂 I do love the honesty.
I think the difference is we are not owned or identified in being dyslexic, it’s not something I feel holds me back in any way and I no longer hold the belief that it makes me less. I can feel this is the same for!
Equality is the essential ingredient that will bring equilibrium to the scales of justice.
Amina every child should be viewed individually, as we all have our unique way of learning, and there is no one size fits all approach. It is a sad reflection of society that the way we educate is to fit every one into the same shape, when in fact we are all unique and complementary to each other. Instead of filling us up with information deemed to be useful, if education became a means of working together on projects we might see a more harmonious world.
Amina I am sure there are many who feel as you did at school. This is the problem of assessing children through a set grading system. We are all so individual and our needs are so different as well. To be accepting of our differences in all areas of our lives and if “a hand” is needed then making that OK.
Being measured against a model that doesn’t take into account the multi-dimensionality we are actually from and a part of, will only succeed in producing mind dominant humans at the expense of the body and it’s natural and universal intelligence.
What a huge misunderstanding we have with being clever. This idea we have that it’s to do with having the answer or speedily replying is so far from the mark, and cuts out and isolates those who don’t make the mark. Our true intelligence lives in the body – and honouring it is our way to master. If we had classes in connecting feeling and sharing this Amina you would get an A+
I don’t recall my primary or high school ranking us into groups by our performance. I know this system is common in England but now I see it in our local high schools. Perhaps I didn’t notice this was going on, as I was one of the ‘smarter kids’ and got a lot of recognition out of this as a younger person. Reading this blog I could feel the stress of being in the middle range and the worry of slipping into the lowest class, where you are labelled as stupid. Thank you for sharing this perspective with us.
The ‘perfect student’ syndrome not only affects the child but also the parents/adults. I have noticed that having kids who are ‘doing well’ at school is one of the big tick boxes for a parent, so they feel they are doing well.
Briefly reading some of the comments, it appears it’s not uncommon for people to have experienced struggle at school, and with little support. Awesome that you’re sharing your story Amina, because it’s further confirmation for those that have a shared experience that nothing was ever wrong with them and that they were definitely not alone. Such a shame it isn’t discussed as commonly as it is experienced.
Often I feel it’s just put into the ‘too hard basket’. People don’t have the confidence to trust they know how to help, so they turn a blind eye and hope that someone else will pick up the slack, meanwhile letting the child feel completely and unnecessarily inadequate.
The thing is too, so many don’t deal with energy, they don’t realise that even if they do ‘help’ a student but hold a judgement within that they are different or somehow less, that the child/adolescent feels that. They sense it if someone is outwardly looking genuine but inside holding them as different or wrong.
Thank you Amina for sharing. I was not dyslexic but I struggled at school. I was in a top set by the skin of my teeth but I had to work and I put so much pressure on myself to be there to please those around me. It makes me feel sad that I and so many conform to this way of being when there is so much wisdom, playfulness and love to be shared with the world.
Thank you for sharing this, Amina. I can really feel how the lack of understanding has played a big part in me judging people and their choices, and my consequential reactions – when faced with something/someone that didn’t fit into what I had perceived as normal in my own little world.
Hello Amina and I have found the problems or learning difficulties that children and then adults face interesting. As you say the pressure we put on ourselves and others to match up to a level or bar that continues to rise is impossible. The only thing it does is bring in competition where you don’t ever match up to the impossible bar but you are at least better off then someone else. Let’s talk about the pressure as well, you can just imagine if you are having a difficulty how much more difficult it is when you are put under the spotlight and under pressure. I see this as deliberate and it comes from us not seeing children or not seeing people for who they are and what they need. We put everyone into classes or groups and then whatever the norm is of that group we focus on that. In that focus much doesn’t get seen and many don’t get heard. Dyslexia is one such condition that with respect isn’t truly a condition. It comes from children not being seen for who they are and then a system delivering learning as a dictation. The children have a part in this as well but it is up to us, all of us to support each other and not just diagnose, give a solution and try and fix.
I feel your article Amina exposes not just the difficulty a child may have, but the inability of us as adults to meet everyone exactly as they are. Our education was such that we conformed to the mainstream and so are unable to flow with the differences that all people have. This could be the starting point of supporting children with learning difficulties. Firstly drop our own ideals about how we will find a person to be, and instead accept how they are.
When I was child, I had trouble saying certain sounds and what I remember about it was the shame I felt when I had to leave the classroom to go to the speech teacher. I did not think there was anything wrong with me until someone decided I needed to go to the speech teacher.
Later in life I began to understand that is hard to be different in this world.
When I found Universal Medicine, Serge Benhayon presented we are not supported to be ourselves in this world and that is all that we need to do. With support I am returning to myself, and now I can support other people to do the same just by being me.
I am also finding the same thing Ken, as I grow with the support from Universal Medicine I am returning to my connection to myself or inner-most and this feels normal.
I have to meet you one day Amina, its uncanny how many similarities we have, I have read your other blogs and you are an incredible woman. For most of my life I identified with being dyslexic and I decided to go into hospitality because it felt very hands on and practical but reading and writing dockets was difficult. I am now writing very well when I have a computer and reading blogs everyday. I had a brief stint of thinking I wanted to study hairdressing as well but I choose to open my own cafes instead. If I ever get over to the UK I would love to meet , you are a true inspiration.
When we make it about being on a higher level there is always someone that needs to be on a lower level otherwise if we were all equal the whole idea of higher and lower would not exist, so the very system of categorising into higher and lower or better and worse is flawed as it brings in comparison and judgment.
Very true Judith, the system creates separation amongst the children as we judge them for what they can do and how much they can remember and not for who they are; an impossible situation to have harmony within the workplace as every child can feel that they are being judged and compared to another.