being presented paper flowers they made themselves for our final days... gonna miss these girls SO much.
when I first got them I thought it was going to be easiest class since they were the youngest and all girls. boy, was I wrong! they were all woefully behind where their age levels should be, couldn't even write the alphabet correctly let alone read other than the few words that had been previously repeated to them over and over, and were all set in bad habits from years of having different volunteer teachers revolve through their doors every few weeks.
but within a few weeks of endless coaching, flashcards, games, repetition, and LOTS of tears and tantrums, they were soon able to read full beginner books on their own.
as I leave them today, I leave with sadness, but also a great sense of pride in watching how much they've grown in these past 3 months. all of them can now read several books on their own, write their ABCs flawlessly, a few have even gotten to where they should be for math, and my personal highlight- they staged an original play they came up with on their own for my last day!
I really hope that some of what they've learned under my often rigid tutelage will carry over to the next volunteers who get them, but at least I can say without a doubt that I will remember all that they have taught me. to have patience, never give up even when it seems hopeless, cherish every moment, to take the time and fan the flame of potential in each one.
they also taught me that if you really want results and to make a difference you have to be willing to put in the extra time and effort including hand copying assignments several times from a single textbook at nite for tomorrow's lesson or using your lunch time to make their homework so you can give them the one-on one- attention needed in class.
but most importantly I will remember what it was like to experience the joy that is a child's unconditional love that they give freely even when you were really strict with them, when you take the time to invest in them. I can't wait to see what the future holds for these bright young ones! 💚
#thegerwaiianexperience #teach #volunteer #students #lifelessons