Comunidad Educativa la Tierra

Comunidad Educativa La Tierra teachers during the 16G L1 course, facilitated by Martha Cabral

Aguascalientes, Mexico

About the School

Laura, Martha Cabral and Mari Cruz, Aguascalientes, Mexico

Laura and Maricruz started an animal shelter almost twenty five years ago. Over the years, they have rescued lots of animals; cats and dogs to horses, sheep and donkeys, saving them from abuse. After taking the 16 Guidelines for Children & Teens course in Cozumel Mexico, in 2008 with Dekyi Lee Oldersaw, they felt so inspired that decided that they wanted to start a school where the 16G were taught and experienced by the children.

They began building a school, literally brick by brick. In 2010 the women completed a 16 Guidelines Level 1 course with Dekyi Lee and Marian O’Dwyer and following this the “Comunidad Educativa la Tierra” School finally opened. In 2013 Martha Cabral one of FDCW’s facilitators and trainers was invited to come and train its teachers in the 16 Guidelines. Martha has delivered annual training at the school almost every year since 2013 (barring the Covid period).

“Over the years, I have facilitated several 16G L1 courses (almost every year), for their teachers and for themselves, because they love the course, and they always participate in the courses”.
– Martha Cabral – 16G Facilitator, Mexico

The School Today

Sofi – 6th grade student at Comunidad Educativa la Tierra

Comunidad Educativa la Tierra is only a small school, they have 131 children now, with a total of more or less 260 students that have worked with the 16G since the school started. And today, they have 14 teachers involved in the 16G program. The first generation of children who finished the elementary school, have just graduated this year. The children have been working with the 16 guidelines throughout their time at school.

Martha Cabral, their 16G facilitator, told us that ‘“After all this time working with the 16G, what you can see in the kids is, that they are very kind and generous. If for example, a child has an inconvenience, or drops something, they immediately, try to help. These children are very humble, and easily ask for forgiveness. They are very supportive. If someone needs help, they always try to help and if they can´t solve the problem, they look for help from the teachers. They can´t stand seeing others suffering, they have a great respect for the environment and for animals too.”

“[The 16 Guidelines] can help you in life, so as not to be rude to others and to be kind…”
– Sofi, a 6th grade student at Comunidad Educativa la Tierra

Educating the Heart

The first generation of students have just graduated from the school. The School Principal wanted to share how the children have benefited from the 16 Guidelines program. In the video above one of the teachers interviews a student, Sofi, and asks how the 16 Guidelines have impacted her life. Sofi replies that the 16 Guidelines have helped her in life “not to be rude to others and to be kind” and that they have helped her to forgive. She mentions a particular example of life at home with her sister. She explains that through the 16 Guidelines, when she fights with her sister, she can now ask her to forgive her. She explains that now she is able to be more honest with her sister and tell her things she wouldn’t normally want to say.

These children, from such a young age, seem to be developing a certain wisdom… Their responses show that they are actively engaging their mind in day to day life, taking the initiative to not react immediately to their emotions, that they are not their emotions. And, when they make a mistake, to accept that. Everyone makes mistakes. So, when we make a mistake why not try to fix that and ask for forgiveness.

What would the world be like if we taught ethics to children from a young age? What if we were educate children in how to develop their hearts and not just their brains? Comunidad Educativa la Tierra seem to be doing just that. With a strong team of teachers, well equipped to teach topics like Generosity, Forgiveness, Kindness, through the framework of the 16 Guidelines, these children seem to really be developing their hearts. This touching video shows that.

“Modern education is premised strongly on materialistic values. It is vital that when educating our children’s brains that we do not neglect to educate their hearts, a key element of which has to be the nurturing of our compassionate nature”.
– HH the Dalai Lama

Gracias Vida

Gracias Vida – a song by the children of 6th grade

Gracias Vida – a song composed by the 6th Grade at Comunidad Educativa la Tierra

For Thanksgiving in 2019, the children of 6th grade were asked to write about what they were grateful for. They each made some drawings, with words about what it was they were each grateful for. Touched by their words, their music teacher decided to make a song with them, Gracias Vida (Thank You Life). The video above is the result.

In the song the children thank for their family, for food on the table, for a place to live, for nature, for air, for being in good health… And, they seem to all be very happy thanking life in their song. Wouldn’t it be great if we all, adults and children alike, stopped to reflect on the things we have to be grateful for? This act of rejoicing in what we do have, can act as a direct antidote to feelings of sadness or loneliness. Rejoicing in what we do have helps bring these happy ideas to our mind and accustoms our mind with happy feelings.

There seems to be a profound lesson available in this song. The act of thinking about the good things in life, feeling grateful for them and sharing them brings about happiness (and doing the opposite, thinking about the bad things in life and getting absorbed in those thoughts brings about sadness). Not just for yourself, but for those around you too.

Thank you Comunidad Educativa for composing this song. And thank you life for sharing it with us.

“The school has been working with the 16G for about eight years. The owner and the principal are very sensitive people, and they totally believe and trust in the 16G, as a very important tool to help children to be more caring with their classmates and with other children, as well as with their families, most of all to have a good heart”.
– Martha Cabral, 16G Facilitator for Comunidad Educativa la Tierra, Mexico

Both the teachers and Martha, the 16G facilitator for the school, are convinced that integrating the 16 Guidelines has been key in helping the children grow.

If you are interested in learning more about the 16 Guidelines for Life you can learn more about our 16G courses here or take a look at our free resources here.

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