Student Spotlight: Tatum Samuels

Through programmes such as Support-A-School and Teach-A-Teacher, The LLC Academy seeks to contribute to the skills development of young, unemployed learners who are passionate about teaching and helping others. One of our students, Tatum Samuels, was recently delighted to inform us that she has been accepted into the Masters programme of her choice – which would not have been possible without the assistance of The LLC Academy.

Born in Durban, though she has lived in Johannesburg for most of her life, Samuels discovered her passion for teaching through a volunteer experience she had. “I volunteered at the Three2Six holiday programme in December 2017,” says Samuels. “Three2Six is a South African project that bridges education for refugee and migrant children. During that holiday programme, I saw a side of education that I had never seen before, primarily how vital it is and how enjoyable it can be. I thought that if I could have a career that made me happy every day and could spread joy through learning, I would have accomplished my purpose.”

Samuels credits The LLC Academy with helping her to achieve her goals. “The LLC Academy have helped me by providing funding for my undergraduate, and now postgraduate degrees,” says Samuels. “The continuous support from The LLC Academy has motivated me to further my studies so that my dream of improving teaching and learning in Foundation Phase in South Africa can be reached.”

Samuels dreams are big, but very well thought out – she hopes to use her studies to better the future of the children of South Africa. “I want to work in educational resource development for the advancement of language, literacy, mathematics, science, and technology,” says Samuels. “For my honours project, I am focusing on the use of technology in Foundation Phase teaching, and I have seen all of these fantastic education technologies that appear effective but lack social interaction among learners and essential learning principles. Ideally, I would like to travel around the world to learn how other education systems teach their foundation phase, and consolidate the best methods to bring back to South Africa. I would also like to develop resources with and without technology, so that all young learners, regardless of location, can be given an opportunity to be on a global level.”

“Samuels is exactly the kind of future educator that we love being able to support,” says Eileen Thornhill, Director of The LLC Academy. “Her passion, foresight, and dedication to the upliftment of others is exactly what The LLC Academy hopes to help our learners achieve. My colleagues and I are so pleased to have been able to help Miss Samuels on her educational journey.”

As a future educator, Samuel’s teaching philosophy comes from an unusual source: “Ironically, it does not come from one of the many theorists I was required to learn about in order to pass my education studies,” says Samuels. “It originates from the 2016 film Bad Moms, when Mila Kunis’ character says, “We should not be teaching our kids how to be good test-takers. We should be teaching them how to be good people!” I believe that education has so much more to give than delivering tests and producing anxiety at a young age.”

“I am proud to be in a position that I never dreamed of, but now I can’t stop dreaming, and it feels amazing to know that there are more options for me than I originally thought,” says Samuels.

Samuels is one of many students who have benefited from The LLC Academy’s array of programmes designed to uplift and educate South Africans who intend to use their studies to give back. Speak to our consultants if you are interested in supporting these programmes, which also fulfil the Skills

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