Learning


Education in Belize: Strengthening the Balance, Part II (Leaders) 1

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant Last year November, I wrote an article to remind students and teachers alike of the importance of always maintaining and Strengthening the Balance between each other in the classroom and while at school.  Teachers and students will work productively and smoothly when they treat Education in the classroom as a two-way, not one-way, process.  In other words, despite what many people (especially parents who had limited schooling) may have believed in the past, or may still do, students are not sponges who merely go to school to soak up knowledge from […]


Education in Belize: Difficult Students (From Challenges to Solutions)

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant In previous articles I reviewed both positive and negative ways to deal with “Difficult Students” who constantly misbehave at school.  Dealing with Difficult Students   Effective Ways to Deal with Difficult Students  Dealing with Loud and Playful Difficult Students  I encouraged teachers to have unbending and effective classroom management, and I suggested positive ways for them to deal with repeated and distractive behavior of students.  However, several parents recently contacted me to complain about several difficult students whose constant power struggles with teachers at a high school in Belize City hamper the learning […]


Common Misconceptions of Education 7

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant Previously, we discussed the issue of parents and guardians who seem neglectful and show very little, if any, interest in their children’s day-to-day work, or lack of work, at school.  However, I made it clear that there’s nothing to be gained when educators or PTA parents point fingers at students’ parents who do not regularly participate in school activities, or communicate regularly with teachers, or attend school and PTA meetings.  We do not help students to learn by judging their parents or by comparing one parent to another.  How, then, do […]


RESPONSIBILITY TO WHOM AND FOR WHAT? 4

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant In my articles I try to point out and describe to readers, both inside and outside of Belize, the many responsibilities as well as the essential needs of educators, students, parents, and the community/country at large. The bottom line and ultimate goal of each article presented in this column and on RESPONSIBILITY TO WHOM AND FOR WHAT? is to encourage each individual, not only students but the entire country, to keep improving and growing productively in the new 21st Century. My recent observations and striking descriptions (with apologies to no one) […]


EDUCATORS FOR SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY 8

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant In previous articles I pointed out that presently many of our people in Belize are struggling, day in and day out, to survive ever-increasing hard times.  However, as pitiful and miserable as our current violent situations may be, positive change for the better is always within our control.  We will improve on any out-of-hand or dangerous situations in which we live today once we choose to cease living in pathetic, but comfortable, conditions of “learned helplessness”.  (See belizeguidance.blogspot.com for definition.)   It is sad that many of us choose to live under […]


LEARNED HELPLESSNESS 5

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant In a previous article I pointed out that in 2013 (too) many people in Belize are struggling, day in and day out, and trying to survive ever-increasing “hard times”. During these very difficult times life gets harder and harder with each passing day. Yet, as of today, I see no public action whatsoever being taken, no suggestions being made, to try to lower the extremely high unemployment rate (especially of highly educated citizens), widespread poverty, gangs openly and violently taking anything and everything they choose from hard-working Belizeans, the dozens of […]


EXCUSES, EXCUSES, EXCUSES 3

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant Today, in 2013, (too) many people in Belize are struggling through “hard times”.  These difficult times specifically include: never-before-seen high unemployment of both the educated and uneducated; widespread poverty that also affects people who once were middle class; gangs fighting openly amongst themselves day and night, blatantly taking anything and everything they can get from hard-working Belizeans; violent and uninvestigated murders by known gangs in increasing numbers almost everyday; more and more closures of what were once successful business establishments that gainfully employed many Belizeans; higher and higher tuition costs for […]


Who Will Improve Our schools? 8

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant We don’t have the best possible Education System in Belize today to prepare our children to live in this era of advanced technology. Before we can create one, though, we must first “want it”! Sadly, Education Systems in Belize have not been developed due to the overwhelming apathy from parents, educators, and the government towards constantly improving our schools. As in most third-world countries, the Education we provide our children in Belize today is what it was 50+ years ago. But my grandchildren should not have to study the same curriculum […]


Schools: Safe and Nourishing Havens 8

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant During my recent 2 years working at a local high school in Belize I quickly found out about the very public cases of students who were gossiped about openly by other students, teachers, and the community.  Some students had parents who were alcoholics and fought a lot, were drug dealers “serving time”, or were physical and emotional abusers at home.  There were many other students with their very own secrets — hidden and locked away from everyone else.  Many were shy students who never said much.  They may have appeared average […]


MOTIVATIONAL STRATEGIES FOR UNMOTIVATED ADULTS 5

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant “There are no hopeless situations; there are only men who have grown hopeless about them.” – Clare Booth Luce (1903 – 1987) The main goal of all professional guidance counselors in schools is to guide and counsel all students; but their top priority is to try to help the troubled ones. During my recent 2 year experience as a guidance counselor in Belize, I worked with many high school students (all levels, from 1st to 4th formers) to help them confront and try to overcome many of their recurring problems. My […]