Language buddies had enabled me to observe my own culture with new eyes. Through working in an ESL (English as a second language) classroom, I saw life from a middle school ESL student’s perspective. The children I worked with are developing their English skills later in life than their non ESL classmates. Learning English is not an easy task, however, I was privileged to see how hardworking these kids are. By working on reading, writing, and speaking skills, I am so thankful for being part of the reason their education is growing. From a week to week basis, their individual skills became stronger. Seeing the difference in the community makes me appreciate language buddies and the community service in the middle schools.
In today's society, exhibiting intercultural skills is a key aspect in creating a globalized citizen. Language Buddies community engagement strives towards creating a well-rounded college student by exposing them to awareness of new cultures. This semester I have worked in a middle school ESL classroom to help a variety of individuals increase the reading, writing, and speaking skills. However, they have taught me about their various cultures and have increased my interpersonal communication skills with those who have a different background than I. For example, I have worked with several Spanish speaking students. Language Buddies allows me to interact with those with a Spanish background to utilize my Spanish skills. We were able to ultimately learn more about each other's cultures. This allows me to continue to increase my curiosity towards new cultures such as the Hispanic community.