After a couple days of catching up on homework and classes after spring break, it was refreshing to get back to ACH and see the students I’ve become so fond of. While spring break couldn’t have felt quicker for me, I’m sure the last week for them felt much longer.
When it came to assisting them on their work, I was reminded of how fast the lessons move at that age. You leave for a week and the kids are writing full sentences and paragraphs with the compound words they couldn’t spell a few days ago. I find that a lot of the time, the students will know they have a certain problem right, but they like to hear a “yep” or “good job” to sort of reassure them that they’re on the right track. I think some kids probably get so worried about being wrong that they are anxious about turning in an assignment to their teacher. They seem to respond positively to just minor encouragement that they know fairly well what it is they’re working on. It tells them that they’ve been paying attention in class and they feel rewarded for their effort.
I think a lot of students in elementary school probably feel a bit overwhelmed by all the different subjects and topics they’re learning and naturally attach to certain classes while showing disdain for others. That’s why I feel it’s important that while I prefer to help them on their history or spelling assignments, I don’t show any distaste for their math homework, etc. because this may be their favorite. I like to remind them sometimes how even the stuff that they think is “stupid” or irrelevant may come up later on in their schooling and life in general.
As cool as it was to see where they were with their studies, the highlight of my week was definitely at the end of the day when we took the kids outside to play on the playground. I played some basketball with them and it brought me back to how excited you’d get in elementary school on those first few days where it was nice enough to play outside again.