Returning Teachers: Math Unit

This academic year, we welcome two new additions to the math faculty unit! Get to know Ma’am Beltran and Sir Damasco.

Sir Saturnino Damasco

Many things come and go, yet the natures of scholars remain the same, even after forty-four years. Proof of that is Sir Saturnino Damasco Jr., one of the two new additions to the math unit.

An alumnus of Batch ’73, his high school interests were not unlike those of scholars today, from card games like contract bridge to sports like table tennis, chess and basketball. The campus he speaks of, however, is almost unrecognizable.

“We were the first batch to set foot here,” he said, gesturing to the floor around. “You call it the SHB? We called it the ‘new building’. When we were in second and third year, we saw this building being constructed.”

After graduating, Sir Damasco went on to take up math as his major. After over 20 years of teaching in Paranaque, he decided to return to PSHS-MC as a math teacher. Unsurprisingly, his father and his son were math professors as well.

When asked about the lessons he has learned over his life as an educator, he replied, “You will develop a lot of patience, especially with unruly students. I have to be prepared because I’m teaching differential calculus…I have to study, because [students] are smart. They can spot some of my errors.”

Although the prefabricated buildings he spent high school in were demolished, and the school curriculum has changed significantly since the seventies, perhaps the students from both eras of PSHS history are not too different.

“Students remain as they are — smart, very intelligent.”

What inspires you? The students — they’re smart, they’re lively, they’re nice. I like my place in the classroom.

Choco na gatas o gatas na choco? Choco na gatas.

What is your favorite number on the electric fan? 1. If I put it on two or three and it hits me, I might develop a cold.

Is there anything else you want to tell the students? “Learn to play contract bridge the right way. Read books, or buy books from National Bookstore. [Students] have their own rules now.”

Ma’am Maria Isabel Beltran

For people like Ma’am Maria Isabel Beltran, life in the corporate world can be “soul-sucking” when you’re not working for something you love. That’s why she returned this year to PSHS-MC as an alumnus after her high school graduation in 2009, teaching math for the first time.

“Hindi siya katulad ng teaching, na ‘yung trabaho mo is para sa mga bata,” she said of her corporate job.

Ma’am Beltran loved math as a grade school student. Her interest for the subject sparked even more when she entered high school, learning under teachers like Ma’am Dinah Gutierrez, Sir Fortunato Tacuboy and Sir Petri Espanol.

With a teaching position of her own, she has a new source of inspiration: “Yung mga estudyante ko. Kapag pagod ka na, iisipin mo, kailangan ko pa rin siyang gawin, kasi kawawa naman yung students ko kung hindi ko sila matulungan ng maayos.”

After all, it hasn’t been too long since Ma’am Beltran was a scholar herself. Though she sees students now as more lax compared to her batch, the experiences seem more or less the same.

“Maraming requirements,” she spoke about her high school life, “At madalas magpuyat o magpagod, pero masaya.”

In her free time, Ma’am may be found reading a manga chapter or watching the latest episode of a Korean drama.

  • Choco na gatas o gatas na choco? Gatas na choco.
  • What is your favorite number on the electric fan? 2. Tama lang.
  • Myers-Briggs Personality Type: INFP.
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