Reflecting Smile

Reflecting Smile

Thursday, April 2014

By: Selma Z.

I remember when I was in grade 7, there was a beautiful girl in grade 9 that every time I walked by she would be smiling. Maybe she was beautiful because she was just simply beautiful, or maybe it’s the smile that made her so. But the thing is, I don’t even remember what she looked like. I just remember that smile. That’s the thing, they say, “a smile goes a long way”, and it really does. When you walk down the street, and you’re having a bad day, you see someone smile, automatically you smile back and your day just gets a little better.

Scientific research has proven that when you are feeling down, and you look into the mirror and smile, you can actually trick your brain into believing that you’re happy. Charles Darwin created a facial feedback hypothesis, which has been confirmed by research to be true. His theory suggests that facial muscles can change emotions. One of the many researches that was conducted to prove this hypothesis was having a group of people hold a pencil in their mouths, which forces the zygomaticus major muscle and orbicularis oculi muscle into forcing one to smile.

When the brain feels happy, it produces endorphins and neuronal signals are transmitted to the facial muscles to trigger a smile. As well as when our smiling muscles contract, a signal is sent back to the brain, stimulating a reward system, therefore increasing endorphins. When you are happy, you’ll smile; when you smile your brain is happy. It’s a beautiful thing how the brain works. So next time you’re down, just remember to smile at others around you, but most importantly, smile at yourself!

Teaching Over the Curriculum

Teaching Over the Curriculum

Monday, March 2014

By: Selma Z.

As a teacher, I have to admit that teaching in Lebanon has showed me a lot that other places would not have given me the opportunity to. To be clearer, I taught grade three of ages 7-8 in a class of about 18 beautiful, intelligent children. Seeing them grow from the beginning of the year towards the end was the most satisfying experience one could go through.  Within my classroom, I had five children who were counted as “special students” who had special needs. The most beautiful thing though, is that these children were integrated into the regular classroom and did not feel the difference of their needs. This is the future of what I see in all schools. All children, and let’s admit, most adults (including myself!), have our own issues. To be able to feel like we’re all a big group tackling the same problems and solving the same problems each with their unique way is the point of dealing with not just educational, but social issues. The children always need someone there for them besides their parents and family around. The role of a teacher in a child’s life is underestimated, however we need to realize that a child spends more time in school throughout the day than they do at home. A minimum of 6 hours at school, and by the time the child goes home they need to shower and eat and do their homework before they go to sleep. This alone shows that the role of the teacher is very important. They have to act as the passionate, caring, understanding, and very patient educator. As teachers, we need to cater to different styles of children, different styles of teaching, and different levels of mental understanding. However, the satisfaction of watching the children grow and move on is the most beautiful feeling I have personally experienced.