When Shakira was a child, her mother discovered that the girl had a gift for learning. Shakira knew the alphabet by the age of eighteen months and at three she knew how to read. By the time she was four, she was ready for school. School was not just a place where little Shakira learnt her arithmetic and geography. There she began to understand such great things as kindness, love, trust, and other human ideals. She realized what real friendship was and how much her family meant to her. Later it helped her to decide what to do with the big money she earned.
Shakira loved attention and wished to find a way to get it. She sang a lot for her schoolmates and teachers. However, the music teacher told her that she sounded “like a goat”. Shakira wasn’t too upset about it and soon found a more original way to become the centre of attention. It was dancing. It helped her to express herself and become famous in school. What is interesting is that no one had ever taught her to dance.
In school Shakira was disciplined, but absent-minded. She was usually writing lyrics for her songs on the back of her notebooks. However, Shakira was a good student because she was a quick learner and could understand her teachers’ explanations faster than others.
As soon as the bell rang after class, Shakira was the first one to run and get in line for the cafeteria. She usually bought a pepsi, a hamburger and something sweet, like a muffin or a piece of cake. She seldom took a packed lunch from home. Though Shakira was a lover of fast food, she had no weight problems, as she loved dancing.
When she was eight, Shakira's father lost all his money because his business went bankrupt. For a while Shakira had to stay with her relatives in Los Angeles. When the girl returned, she was shocked to see almost everything that her family had had been sold. She later said: "In my childish head, this was the end of the world."
To show her that things could be worse, her father took her to a local park to see the homeless children. What she saw shocked her deeply and she said to herself: "One day I’m going to help these poor kids when I become a famous singer or dancer".
Between the ages of ten and thirteen Shakira was invited to various dance events and became very popular in the area. It was at this time that Shakira met a local theatre producer, who was impressed with her performance and as a result tried to help her career. This woman organized a meeting with the managers of the Sony company. After Shakira sang, they decided to sign a contract for three albums with the talented girl.