Certified Staff - Math
I am Benedicto C. Pastrana Jr., youngest among six siblings from the small town of Nueva Ecija, Philippines. I spent most of my childhood years helping my father in the fields, planting and harvesting palay; at the same time, I attended to my studies in elementary school. As a result of these early age hardships, I dreamt big to rid myself of the muddy fields. In turn, I excelled in my studies and earned numerous academic achievements. I was the Valedictorian of my high school and was given a college scholarship to pursue my dreams. My college life was a test of character as to how I would survive. My family could not financially support me while I was in college; therefore, I had to work and study at the same time. With the Lord’s guidance, the support of my family and my determination to succeed, I was able to win the battle and eventually became a teacher.
I spent my first two years teaching at Our Lady of Fatima Academy which is located in our town. Then in May, 1997, I was given the opportunity to teach at The Sisters of Mary School-Girlstown at Biga, Silang, Cavite, Philippines. The defining moments in my teaching career happened at this school as I was assigned to coach students for mathematics competitions. As the coach, my students won many Individual and Team Competition, but I always reminded them that competition is not only about winning, it is about how they competed, learned and enjoyed the process. What mattered most, was the learning that took place as a result of the event. It was at The Sisters of Mary that I honed my teaching skills and truly became passionate about my teaching. Then after twelve years, I was given a new opportunity at Imus National High School in 2009.
At Imus National HS, I started at the bottom and needed to work my way up. Three years after my arrival the department head recognized my passion and dedication for teaching. This led to another chapter in my professional life as I was promoted to Trainor of Coaches in Mathematics, a position I held for the last four years. On June 10, 2016, my greatest professional opportunity was presented as Shelby Public Schools accepted my application to teach Mathematics. I know now that my life story will continue in Montana and I believed I will make contributions to the Mathematical life of the students in Shelby.
Educating is my passion, and there is nothing that can stop us from learning in every moment that we spend with our students, colleagues, and supervisors. Always remember that “Positive thinkers have a solution to every problem, while Negative thinkers have a problem to every solution.”