Thursday, April 17, 2014

The Helpful Ninja

I may be on break this week, but I am never far from work thanks to my e-mail and Internet capable smartphone.  I received an e-mail from a student this morning who asked a question on behalf of her mother.  This has happened to me several times over the years, but this morning it made me think and realize that I am more than just a teacher, I am a gateway to the American way of life.  Over my career as an ESOL ninja, I have helped my students' families navigate areas that we all take for granted and most likely never stop to think twice about.  For example, I have:
  • Helped families book airline tickets
  • Helped a student (and her mother) order a quinceanera party dress from
  • Helped families obtain library cards
  • Helped families locate low-cost health clinics
  • Helped a family make a vet appointment at a local humane society
  • Helped a family compare cell phone plans
  • Helped families write letters and fill out applications
  • Helped families obtain low-cost broadband Internet (via
While time consuming, I have enjoyed helping every one of these families and even feel a bit honored that they would think to turn to me.  Since I often teach students for multiple years and then go on to teach siblings and other family members, it pays to have an established positive relationship with families as I continue my career.

No comments:

Post a Comment