It’s time for the “Creative Heroes” category and today I wanted to share with you the story of an incredible woman that comes from my region, Galicia.
Ángela Ruiz Robles, Doña Angelita, was a teacher. In 1920 she started working in a tiny rural school in Ferrol (Galicia). Eventually she moved and went teaching nearby to a girls hospice, where she ended up being the headmaster.
Angelita had a dream: transforming the education system and make it more dynamic and friendly. This was a period where rates of illiteracy where 60% higher among females. Only 25% of the female population was able to read and write. Doña Angelita, a great creative, was committed to change this.
And she started with books. Doña Angelita didn’t like the books that were available so she wrote and published 16 new ones. Geography, Language, Spelling…in some of them she included cartoon characters to make them more likable and in others, (as the Alphabetical Atlas) she mixed subjects to facilitate the learning.
But this is only half the story. Angelita had two obsessions: bring an end to students’ heavy backpacks and individualize all the learning process (sounds familiar?! And this was 60 years ago!). So one day she came up with a fantastic idea: the mechanic book:
Inside this book were all the subjects and more. It could be personalized and she even tried fluorescent inks so students could read it at night. Isn’t it amazing? Doña Angelita is, officially, the pioneer of the electronic book.
You can see Angelita’s book at Fundación Telefónica de Gran Via (Madrid) until June the 28th. And here you have a documentary about her work. Isn’t it wonderful to find teachers like her? When teachers have vocation they become, without a doubt, creative heroes.