i dont normally go to the office early, but last week i had a 9:30 appointment. so i didnt have breakfast, and my son had to drive us really fast to the office ( dont worry not more than the speed limit) as we normally have our breakfast at leasure, and cruise to work without stress. then of course no one was there. at 10:17 someone arrived and my son told him that he is in real trouble as he missed up with my mother, you see i am very strickt on timing, i dont believe in Dubai time, or middle east time, i belive in time. that is why i remembered that email forwarded to me by my sister, she keeps on sending me forwards, until i opened a special folder in my outlook so i could read her emails at my own time.

this email was so dear to my heart, and the most confusing one, is still in my inbox. I read it often but never forwarded it to anyone.

This email shows the difference between rich and poor countries. The difference is not in the age of the country, or the existence of any natural resources. Nor is the difference based on race, colour or intellectual abilities. Two countries in particular were used to make the analogy very clear, Japan and Switzerland. Both are small, with very little natural resources, but are amongst the richest countries. Japanese products are every where, and Swiss chocolate is the best. I will not mention the other side of the story, but would like to tell you the jest of the forwarded email. It lists down the reasons for those countries to be rich. The reasons lie mainly in the attitude of the people. Attitude matters, the rich countries believe in accepting responsibility, abiding by the laws, have ethics and integrity, respect the rights of the citizens. The people also love work, strive to save and invest and are punctual.

We on the other hand (even though we have heaps of money) are not rich. We are still considered third world and poor. Look at our countries. We have oil, and we have natural resources, but we do not produce anything, our oil is mostly processed by other rich countries. Even the brick that we build our houses from is imported, or at least the technology for making the brick is imported. We don’t make anything, we don’t build anything and we don’t produce anything. This is what I mean by attitude. We all feel that if we can buy the best of what the advanced world makes, why break our heads in making it ourselves.

Attitude can be changed when we all think about the infrastructure of our education. I would like us to look deep into the curriculum that we teach at our schools and universities, did we design it?? Or did we get it from a rich country? I am not saying that we have to be self sufficient, or we should reinvent the wheel. There are things in science and mathematics that are taken for granted, we will have to learn them. For example there might be another way to make a light bulb, but it will always be similar to what Edison had discovered. But who says that we cannot get light in another way, who says that we cannot conserve sunshine, or have winters in the summer, or electricity without wires. Why depend on those individuals in the rich countries to think on our behalf, when we can think for ourselves.

We tend to buy everything from developed countries, of course at times, they review and progress their programmes and we lag behind as we will not know that the programme is changed. Also we never think of teaching our children the qualities that will change their attitude. Ethics and punctuality for example are not part of our teaching programmes.

I would love to call this article, Education with an attitude, but I am worried that it might be misunderstood.

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