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SAVOR THE EXPERIENCE

By: Atty. Christine Bernadette Cruz

I spent more than a decade of my life with this institution, Baguio Patriotic High
School. Without a doubt, I can say that this institution is my second home. Day-in day out, I
would go here without knowing what was there for me after I graduate in high school.
Famously tagged as a school that looks like ‘kulungan,’ inside is a beautiful, inviting and
thoroughly arranged classrooms designed depending on the preference of the classroom
adviser. Natural lighting, soft colors, and uncluttered space are set in each of every corner of
this four-storey building.
I can clearly remember the customary rows of desks cleanly arranged in each classroom
which would be rumpled and jumbled in the afternoon after the boys in my class would run
after one another. Each classroom is uniquely suited to the needs of its students. Preschool
rooms feature low sinks, chairs, and tables; a reading corner with a small couch (or comfy floor
cushions); reachable shelves; and child-sized kitchen tools—elements that allow independence
and help develop small motor skills; and a playroom to give time for the kids to enjoy and
socialize with others and develop their confidence. In upper-level classrooms you’re likely to
see arm chairs and large tables for group work, interactive blackboards, and there is even an
area for computer and science laboratory. I can also recall that there are well defined lockers
placed in the corridors, each of which is assigned to a particular student. Everything seems to
be as fresh as the time I was still enrolled and studying in this school.
Throughout my years in elementary and high school, I can clearly remember the
numerous experiences that stood out in my mind as meaningful. In elementary, I remember
playing Chinese garter (10-20 or 1 and 1) with my girlfriends along the narrow corridors while
boys from every grade would run to the gym and play ‘tornilyo’ (which up to date I don’t know
why was it called tornilyo). I even remember playing ‘jackstones’ on the classroom floor
together with my classmates while everyone else keeping busy on their own business----some
reviewing for the next class, some gossiping about something, some making fun of someone,
and some who would just sit quietly on their armchair. My classes were bonded with crazy
moments and funny things. Amusingly, these are some of the most memorable atmosphere
which I hope I would be able to see again.
It is also worth mentioning that during my high-school days, there is this systematic
monday flag ceremony which a representative from a class should go up the gym stage and be
the conductor for the ‘Lupang Hinirang’ before the whole BPHS community. I remember
myself going up the stage mistakenly conducting for the said national anthem. I also remember
myself taking responsibility in some of the school events. Still, these exerted efforts, hassles,
and stress just to present a good performance during the event are all worth it. These
experiences made me who I am today.
As a child, I didn’t know the meaning of responsibility and accountability. Of course,
a learning triangle (a teacher, a student, and the school environment) must be there to fully
impart the essence of these words. In every educational institution, there is an obligation to
prepare a child for the future through the guidance of the teachers. Accordingly, I want to
commend my teachers who I considered as my second parents because they undoubtedly
helped me become who I am today.
With each element of teaching inextricably linked, I want to thank Ma’am Jane Batoyog,
Teacher Babes, Ma’am Sese, Ma’am Tess Bartolome, Ma’am Dhuks, Ma’am Marymeriam and all others.
I’ve realized that perfecting the BASICS is the key to success and development of a growing
child. I proud to say that I’ve learned these basics in BPHS. I’ve learned that it is difficult to
correct something that was incorrectly taught at a young age. I was blessed to have these
persons who have imparted basic knowledge which up to date are useful baggage in my daily
life. The guidance of these unforgettable teachers will always be an unforgettable part of my
life.
Ultimately, I want to say that this institution is an epitome of a caring community. Not
only would they care for you during your stay but also beyond. The BPHS community makes
sure to treat you as one of their family members. When I left the institution, I did not expect
the unexpected. I thought of bigger responsibilities, complicated ventures, and brain-drying
activities. Good thing, I have this BPHS ethics, experience, background and learning as my
foundation. Whenever I feel dejected and downhearted, I have this institution to look back
on.
Being part of this institution gave me a sense of accomplishment. I found my lifetime
friends here. I had my ups and downs here and even had my first love. I had butterflies bugging
in my stomachs for some unexplainable reasons. I had goosebumps and shivers whenever the
list of top-notchers are to be released. I overcame competitions. In this school, I did everything
that a child could do due to curiosity. I did crazy things and even tripped upon. But most
importantly, I developed my confidence here and realized what I wanted to become. This
institution taught me how not to become coward at difficult times.
Ultimately, now that I am a successful lawyer in one of the best law firm in the country,
I owed my triumph and success today from this institution. I’m still being nostalgic and
sentimental for reminiscing my elementary and high school days. I hope to bring back time to
experience those moments again, but I am afraid it is impossible now. But definitely, I will
give this once in a lifetime experience savored by my children and will make sure not to miss
it.
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