Tue, Dec 16, 2008 - Page 1 News List

COMMUNITY COMPASS: PROFILE: The promise that led to a mission to spread English

HONORFor her half-century of teaching in Taiwan, Doris Brougham received the nation’s highest non-military award

By Shelley Huang  /  STAFF REPORTER

Brougham uses a lot of music in her lessons because she believes that using music can speed up the learning process and make it more fun.

“Music is the language of the soul,” she said. “Words get into your mind, but music touches your heart.”

Having been a teacher for almost all of her life, Brougham saw teaching as a process of taking away people’s fears. For example, a swimming teacher has to take away people’s fear of the water, she said.

“If you make things less complicated, you can have fun and go to the next step. In teaching, you have to lead people. Make it simple. Take away the fear of embarrassment or failure,” Brougham said.

Brougham says she doesn’t want to retire yet because she loves her job, which to her isn’t really a job, but her way of life.

“Are you going to stop helping people just because you get older? It depends on how you look at what you do, if it’s just a job, you should retire. If you hate your job, then you should retire at 50 or 40. But if you like what you’re doing, it’s not a job, it’s just being you,” she said.

For her half a century of teaching and contribution to Taiwan, she was awarded the Order of the Brilliant Star with Special Grand Cordon, the nation’s highest non-military decoration, by former president Chen Shui-bian in 2002.

“I think Taiwan has a very encouraging future. We can be proud of what we’ve done, and we have to keep the young people on the right track,” she said. “That’s what Studio Classroom wants to teach.”

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