Thursday, October 7, 2010

Always picking up the pieces.

My class :) My Karuna kids

Sitting in my daily class (my favorite part of the day), teaching the students and working with my cousin on reading at my desk.

Teacher walks in (male): " She will never learn to read! You're not even helping her!" ETC...

He was just shouting nonsense. I don't even really remember what he was saying.
But I got angry.

So me: "How do you ever expect her to learn if you're just negative?! Beating them, shouting at them, telling them how dumb they are! You really think that's going to help them?!"

Teacher: "In India, love won't cut it. They only learn from shouting and beating, don't you understand? You will never become a teacher in India."

Me: "(the Indian gesture for you're making me crazy) That's not the only way..."

He left the class and I started crying and apologized to my class.
They just kept saying, "Please don't cry Map Didi, please don't cry."

I am not used to talking back to my elders. Disrespect is one of my worst fears, in fact.
I was shaking from the inside out.

Maybe beating and slapping and shouting and yelling and pinching works for some people.
Maybe that really is the only way they can learn.
But I don't have it in me.
I'll never have it in me...
Natalie Donald's teaching methods do not consist of anything but praises, candy, and the occasional, "Okay...let's try sounding it out one more time."
And I'm okay with just that.

So I came home discouraged and hurt.
Replaying the "You're never going to be a teacher..." part over and over again in my head.
My 3 best friends found me crying.
"What's wrong Map?"
I finally composed myself and told them.

They took me to the market and bought me not one...but two raspberry dollies.
Sometimes it's the little things in life that are the most important, like my 3 best friends spending the little money they have to buy me my favorite ice cream just to put a smile back on my face.

Don't forget to show the people you love in your life how much you really love them.
Because even the cheery little things can put sunshine back into someone's cloudy day.
You can also tease me for how cheesy that line just was.

Map Didi