These kids fill 4 hours of my Tuesdays and Thursdays. But caring for them takes more than those 8 hours per week.
I took a part time instructor position for 3 subjects in grade 12. Started with it around the 3rd week of June. I have 13 students. This picture, I took while we were having a lively discussion on the practical applications of the Principles of Marketing. I hid their faces because I took and am posting this picture without their permission. But if I can let you see their faces, they have different emotions in them.
I did not have any teaching degree nor experience. I have had the opportunity of giving trainings to sales personnel from one of my previous corporate jobs. I had facilitated trainings in church. But I have never taught actual students in academics.
And I am teaching Fundamentals of Accounting, Business and Management, Business Finance, and Principles of Marketing. Yeah, 3 subjects, even I surprised myself. And even if I’m only doing this part time, it felt closer to being full-time. It really is no joke preparing lesson plans for 3 subjects, and making sure that the students would learn something from me, and take it to heart.
First quarter exams are in less than 2 weeks, so lately I’ve been giving them exercises, in recording transactions in journals, ledger, and trial balances. I’ve allowed them to look at their notes, and discuss with each other because, in real life, that’s really how we do it, right?
Anyway, I’m dedicating this post to them because somehow I realize that I am beginning to care for these kids. The compensation for a part-time instructor isn’t much, but I know that these kids came from families who have less than we have. I give them handouts that I have printed myself (in my printer at home, instead of having it photocopied in the school office and they would have to pay for it.) I’m considering it service and working for God, because the school is actually run by priests.
I’ve recently given them an exercise on buying behavior, and it kinda gave me a glimpse of their life at home. I didn’t want to pry into their family life, but when I saw their answers, I couldn’t help but feel a little sorry for some of them. And I would love to help them in what ever way possible.
One has written about their grandma and mom, but didn’t seem to include any father figure. One wrote about a mom who’s the breadwinner, one even wrote about a grandparent being the breadwinner. There are other stories where I somehow felt and it was pressed upon me, I’m laying down a foundation for them to pursue a degree and a career in business, in accountancy, and I have to make it my mission that they get their time and money’s worth on education.
Okay, so I’m getting a little too dramatic, but I remember during our first few days together, when we were laying out expectations for the class, one of them was close to tears in saying that they did not learn enough from their previous classes related to those I’m currently teaching. And I have never seen that before. Such passion and willingness to learn. And it just moved me.
I remember, before starting on this job, I prayed that I wanted to be able to teach these kids effectively, not just on the subjects I’m assigned to teach them, but also in life. I always try to squeeze in something about relationships, and real life matters, even if we’re discussing ratios and transactions. I’m just amazed how God is guiding me on what to say so that I can relate to them.
There were times when I second guess myself, if my ways of teaching them are effective. I’m more by the book and other sources, and if I remember something related that I have experienced, I tell them. Even if these kids are younger than I am, I try to find out what interests them. Most of them are girls, so it’s more on Korean pop and cosmetics.
I’m still distancing myself a bit from them, like I didn’t want them to add me as a friend in Facebook, because somehow, I need them to be more interested in what I teach and not in my life. And though I know I’m only teaching them part-time (the first semester is only until October), I am hoping that what I teach them, they would carry on for the rest of their lives, whether they pursue or not any degree or career related to business.
My apologies for blabbing… I guess I just want to let you know that these kids get me preoccupied a lot. No, they haven’t taken the place of my family, but they matter a great deal. 🙂