Monday, June 11, 2007
When given a chance to talk to young people, I often touch on the topic of change. I usually introduce two Latin phrases that usually accompany this subject matter: the terminus a quo and the terminus ad quem—the “end from which” and the “end towards which”, respectively translated into layman’s terms as what it was before the change and what it would become.I have always believed that education is a process and thus involves change in the mind of the one who undergoes this event. But much more than this is the greater scheme: the whole picture of the process of learning that involves not only the one who is educated but also everyone involved in the educative process: the educator, the other students, the parents, the environment. There is therefore a great power in education that effects change practically in the whole community. I am reminded of a documentary television program that featured how coins are polished. The coins are made to look new once again by being mixed with other coins, all of which are continually rubbed with the others’ surface. In time, they all change each other—polished and smooth.We undergo that polishing in this process of change. We are at the beginning of this school year—the terminus a quo. Altogether we move from this end and open ourselves to change.