Love in Every Language

We've had parent/teacher conferences all week.  Yes, it's very early in the semester, but Springdale likes to do them at 5 weeks so the students haven't gotten to far behind by the time conferences come around.  I like this idea, plus I enjoy meeting the parents of my kids early on.  Of course, the parents you really need to show up because their kids are the problem children, don't.  This doesn't really surprise me though.

One of the things that I truly love about teaching in Springdale is the diverse culture we have.  It's amazing to walk around and see all the diverse backgrounds and experiences my kids bring to class with them every day.  I love hearing at least 3 different languages spoken in the hallway at any particular time.  I love how my students help me with my Spanish, and I love it even more when I can perfectly understand what they are saying in their own languages.  I love the fact that we don't let language barriers interfere with helping our kids learn and learning to connect with their parents.  I love that we have translators in our school.  I love my two classes of ESL students.  Yes, they are incredibly difficult to teach, but they are such a joy when they truly grasp a concept.  And "most" of them actually want to learn.

My experiences in the Springdale school district are truly changing my outlook on the melting pot that America is.  I love the fact that we welcome immigrants with open arms, that we are a safe haven for those seeking refuge from terrible situations.  I love that people come here seeking good education, a bright future, and the desire to chase the "American Dream".

Growing up in the South, where we don't see much cultural diversity.  Having graduated from a High School that is, perhaps, one of the premiere cookie cutter schools in Central Arkansas, I've been guilty of becoming frustrated when someone doesn't know how to speak English, or when my tax dollars go towards someone who isn't a true american citizen.  Since becoming a teacher, however, my outlook has changed.  My only desire is for my children to one day grow up in a culture that is rich in diversity.  I hope that my children have best friends who aren't the same skin tone, religion, or even from the same country as them.  I want them to have the opportunity to experience life from every viewpoint, and most importantly to learn "love" in every language.

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