Monday, October 5, 2015

Day 37- I am honored to be a guest

My profession is teaching, but there are these moments when I feel so moved and so inspired, that it feels more like a spiritual experience than work.  Don't get me wrong, it is incredibly challenging work-but I wouldn't be able to do it without the unexpected gifts.  Sometimes its in a colleagues homemade bread or roasted coffee, maybe in a students willingness to keep on trying, or a student that knows exactly when to help another student, or even shows up as a student that says "friggin blast", followed up with "see, I'm curbing my language, MacLean", or the best one yet, a parent that says yes to a home visit. So maybe not a big deal to some folks, but huge for me.   Today two parents said yes to home visits.
I decided last year I wanted to implement home visits this year to see if it could make a difference in some of these kids that often get given up on.  I'm starting early enough in the year that I should be able to collect enough data to conclude if these visits make a difference (this is part of my work with the Stanford Hollyhock Fellowship). My thinking is, a home visit can really convey a different level of care and respect for a student that may inspire them to work harder and/ or not give up. Secondly, seeing a students home can give me insight on how to reach a student, whether its by learning about more things they are interested in or just more about their reality.  I honestly thought today was going to be a wash when I got on the phone and even almost gave up before I started calling.  First call message. Second call, answer- they prefer speaking Spanish- ok, I can do this.  I explain who I am and why I am calling- then pop the question, "quiero ir a su casa- por favor" (I want to come to your house please).  A quick yes -que dia? What day??...I wasn't quite prepared for a yes. We got it scheduled and the parent sounded genuinely happy.  I thought for sure to good to be call-  Dad gave the phone to his wife and she immediately said yes, thanking me over and over.  Again mostly in Spanish- but don't worry, they don't think they won the lottery or anything- my Spanish can cut it.  SO , yes I called after 5:30 and I made the appt.s for 6 pm in the evening- but wow, am I shocked at the willingness and welcoming of these two families.  Lets see how the visits go...but in the meantime I am grateful for people - and the community I work in and am inspired by.

To some, a teacher visiting your house is an honor.  I am honored to be a guest.

When I do what I do not want to do, I am always inspired and better for it.

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