This was a confusing day to volunteer. Both the teacher I work directly under and the teacher whose room I sometimes get sent to were out for the day and had substitutes that didn't know I was coming, AND most of the kids I usually worked with weren't there. The one kid I sometimes worked with was there, so I helped him out a bit as well as helping the usual random kids in the library, but overall I felt as if this was one of my least effective days as a helper. But it happens; hopefully my final day will be better.
Today I met with the other Study Buddies Coordinators and learned about how to use engage.
For my last day at the community center, I helped a lady read a shot story and answer questions testing her comprehension. We also worked on common sayings in the US and got her familiar with some slang, finally I helped her with telling time on a clock.
Language buddies this last semester has enabled me to observe my own culture in a new perspective by the experiences with students in the classroom. Many of the students that were in the classroom I was were born in different countries than the United States. I found this out as students began open up to me and tell me random facts about their lives. Every time a student would tell me something about their live at home, it made me reflect on the similarities and differences from when I was their age at home. I realized that our families are pretty different in certain cultural aspects, but there are also many similarities. An important moment I recall from this past semester that really made me look at my own culture with different eyes was when one of the students was telling me about how frustrated he is with school because he really struggles with English and the parents at home don't use English often so he only hears in at school and other activities. Due to this struggle the student hates school, but is extremely smart. It made me really think that the systems in place for students learning English are not sufficient enough for students that have English as a 2nd language. I can't imagine trying to learn a second language at such a fast pace and then have it affect other classes. Language Buddies really made me take a second look at the culture here in America for kids that immigrate here with their families. I had no idea how little resources they are given here in St.Peter, and mostly likely in many other places.