Monday, February 1, 2010

I am NOT smarter than a 5th grader!

I confess. It's really embarrassing, but I have limited teaching skills when it comes to teaching Math above 5th grade. I don't have to have Jeff Foxworthy prove it to me. See, I already know it.
I am NOT smarter than a 5th grader!

Algebraic and Geometric configurations cause me to bite my nails and break out in a sweat.
This explains my desperate need for a manicure and the lovely arm-pit sweat stains on everything I wear these days. See I applied for, and surprisingly got hired for a job as a teacher of 16 and 17 year-old high school dropouts preparing for the GED.

Three weeks into this job I realize that most of these kids are still  struggling with multiplication, fractions, and integers which, thankfully, I am able to help them with. Coupled with their academic challenges are some pretty serious personal struggles, too. Parents divorcing, unemployment, teen pregnancy, etc.

Some days I wonder if I am making a difference. I wonder if their lives will improve. I'm not sure.
But one thing I am certain about is that we do have a common denominator. (math pun intended)

See, I have had my own struggles. I remember being their age. I know what it meant for that one person to  offer help. Advice. Just an encouraging word.

Yet I can't forget, the very first day on this job. A seasoned teacher/Catholic nun told me, "Just remember, you can't save the world, Jesus already did." Good, practical advice for one that tends to take on the burdens of the world.

So, I do ask that you pray that this job, however long I am at it, will honor the Lord. That somehow they might see Him in my humble actions. That maybe their lives will be changed. I know mine has already.


Gina said...

Congratulations on the new job! You will be great--you are a good teacher AND you have a compassionate heart.
Love the nuns words!
Gina G

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