Lovin' on After School English

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Manna Project International

Today marks two weeks left here in Guatemala. Time passed so quickly while the summer volunteers were here! I feel like I just went to the airport to pick up session one, but in reality we sent the last group of summer volunteers home a week ago. So now we have to transition back to only having PDs in the house all the time. Not only is it strangely quiet in the Manna house, but we also had to go back to programs without an army of helpers. After eight weeks of wonderful help and support from the volunteers, going back to managing my two classes of English alone was a little daunting. I had almost forgotten what it was like to be in a classroom teaching by myself. My kids, of course, were full of energy and enthusiasm, but we made the transition back to one teacher just fine.

The kids got a little present at the end of class: the session two volunteers generously printed out pictures for the students and wrote them cards with words of encouragement about their English and ways to contact them. My students got especially attached to the volunteers in session two, and there were quite a few tears on their last day in class. It was really wonderful to see the volunteers get to know the students in my class, come to appreciate all of their funny quirks, and form relationships with them.

There are only four after school English classes left. When I watched the volunteers say goodbye to the students on their last day, I realized how hard it was going to be when I have to do that exact same thing. But as sad as it will be to say goodbye to them, I'm so thankful that I was able to teach and know this bright group of kids.

-Julie

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