Monday, October 21, 2013

Everything I've learned from Kindergarteners

It's been awhile . . . again. . . since writing.
My writing brain feels rickety and rusty.

This semester, I have a new job away from the place where I worked last year.
I work as an EA in a kindergarten classroom: I am with 5 & 6 year olds all day.
This is humbling for me as I have what feels like a lot of education and would like to be teaching college aged students or adults. But the door swung wide open, and I needed a job so here I am.
And deep in my heart, I know, . . at least I think I know. . . that this is all part of the journey. (Wait--if I'm honest, sometimes I don't know that and wonder what is going on & why can't I find a job more aligned with my major (English) and passions (international liaisons.))

Still, here I am working with Kindergarteners. These kiddos have taught me a few keys lessons.

1. Patience--you cannot hurry along wide-eyed 5 / 6 year olds as they walk. Trust me, I've tried, and it usually results in one of them tripping or running into the other dawdler in front of them.

2. Compassion--sometimes I get angry with the students. They are sometimes rude and interrupt or say things about me in another language. But as soon as one of them gets hurt or has a need, all those feelings of anger fade away, and I see them through the lens of compassion.

3. Laughter--these kids love to laugh. And they laugh at anything including funny voices, stories, or exaggerated facial expressions. I love it!

4. Creativity--It amazes me how creative these students are with the way they draw, paint, and play with toys. One student in particular is always giving out commands for her make-believe games. "You are a prisoner now, and I will go to my queen house and escape the monsters." Or. . "Have you seen any rabbits so I can eat them?" You name it, she will imagine it.

5. Focus--I have learned that if I try to multi-task at all while giving instruction or leading the students, they follow my side-task and stray from the main task that I wanted to do.

6. Clear Expectations. Whenever students do not follow what I expect of them, I usually realize that I did not make it clear what I expected from them. For example, in the lunchroom, if I'm going to need to get up to help another table, I have to tell my table the expectations first instead of getting upset at them later when they have not followed my expectations.

Thank you Father for these invaluable life lessons from kindergarteners.
Help me not to waste the time away wondering why I am here.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Keep writing :)