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The best teacher in the world is a Muslim: “I learned a lesson from Pope Francis”

2016-07-12

This woman of harmless appearance is ignorance's worst enemy: she is the best teacher in the world, according to the Varkey Foundation in London. Her name is Hanan Al Hroub. She was born in a refugee camp in Palestine, where she was a homemaker, but she decided to start teaching when she saw how violence destroyed her children.

HANAN AL HROUB 
Winner, Global Teacher Prize
"Violence was on the verge of traumatizing my children, but I managed to save them and help them overcome it. Not all children have a mother or a teacher that is able to help them. I foster this method so that children grow up healthy and overcome the trauma caused by violence around them.”

The key to her method of education is that the relationship between the teacher and the students is trustful, respectful, honest and warm. She teaches them to work together, and follows their progress, catering to their individual needs, and  rewarding good behavior.

Al Hroub says that two fundamental principles inspire her method: non-violence and learning by playing.

HANAN AL HROUB
Winner, Global Teacher Prize
"Violence has a very strong, negative effect in children's lives and their decision-making. My life has been hard and painful, but I have been able to transform pain into hope. With my method, I try to teach children the importance of dialogue, I teach them that through dialogue new hopes arise. I teach them values to build a better world, and also to accept others; to accept diversity.”

One of her admirers is Pope Francis, who announced that she was the winner of said prize and had the opportunity to meet her in Rome.

HANAN AL HROUB
Winner, Global Teacher Prize
"I am not one to teach anybody a lesson. What stayed with me the most about the Holy Father was his smile, his ability to convey love and peace throughout the world. His message is that we should love each other, and that is the message that I would like to send out to the world too.”

Despite her achievement, this teacher still works in her school in Bethlehem, she hopes that her students won't be victims of ignorance or violence, so that one day they are able to bring peace to that land.


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