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These two experiences went together perfectly, hand in hand.
During the interview I was asked, "Have you had a particular student impact your teaching?"
Yes, yes I did and I hope to never, ever, EVER forget.
My ESOL practicum lasted for approximately 3 weeks, at the end of October to early November. Since I was at the school all day during those weeks, I got to see each age group K-5. I enjoyed being with all of the students, and because of them, my philosophy of teaching has changed. I know now that my real teaching passion lies with English Language Learners (ELLs). It feels so good to know where I belong in the teaching world. I feel excited about being a teacher again, and more than anything I want to be a teacher of language.
With that said, throughout the practicum I made lots of healthy relationships with students and got to know them very well. One particular 4th grade boy touched my heart.
According to his teachers he had some major, major behavior issues at the beginning of the school year. He had improved quite a bit since September, but still struggled from time to time. While I was there we had to sign a behavior tracking chart every day. For the most part, he was okay but I could tell he needed lots of encouragement. Really, my heart broke for him.
On my last day, I told each class that I would come back and visit the day before Thanksgiving break. This boy was sad that I had to leave and it was hard for me too. I missed all of the kids!
But, I came back on the 23rd as I told them.
Being that it was before Thanksgiving, their teacher had them say what they are thankful for prior to exiting out the door.
This boy looked directly at me and said with conviction in his eyes and a sincere voice, "I am thankful that you came back like you promised."
For that, I am a millionaire.