I have been tutoring kids ages 3-7 at a public elementary school here in Segovia. This has been a wonderful experience and a great way to start off my Wednesday mornings.
I love to actively engage in volunteer work and also serve the community. I believe that not only am I giving but also receiving and learning from the experiences. As I tutor kids, I have been reminded about a lot of things that I have taken for granted in life lately. Each and every day I am taking a step into adulthood but I seem to be forgetting things that my younger self was so good at.
What kids have reminded me of:
1. Do not be afraid to ask questions.
It was the first time I had gone to volunteer. I was a new face to the kids which led to them asking me tons of questions from my favorite color to what shows I like to watch on TV. These kids had no filter and were not afraid to ask me anything. They wanted to know every detail of my life. Even what I ate for breakfast! (which was that day a scrambled egg taco with spinach, mushrooms, and tomatoes. Yummy, I know.) I had honestly admired their curiosity.
2. Everyday is a fresh start.
Kids do not carry baggage from one day to another or even from one hour to the next. Do you remember getting in a fight with your best friend over a crayon? You were probably upset and mad at them but after five minutes you two made up and were the greatest of friends once again. Kids don’t hold on to negative emotions. Kids always start fresh!
3. Be courageous.
I was very impressed with the confidence level of the kids I teach. They want to be the first one to answer your question or the first to start the activity and finish it. They have not been beaten down by failure or have a fear for it. They embrace life and take it as it is. They are fearless and determined. I almost envy them. I need to take this from them. I need to sing out loud and dance when I feel like it. (Please don’t judge me the if you ever see me dancing by myself.)
4. Be active.
So much energy! It is almost contagious and I love it. Before class starts every kid is running around the classroom and chasing their friends until they are out of breath. They are releasing every inch of energy in them before school starts. There is jumping, laughing, hugging, and so much talking. This happens once again when volunteers leave and they have a break. The playing is so much fun and makes me feel like they are so happy to have us (volunteers) there. It melts my heart. This active energy given by the kids carries me the rest of the day. They leave me with a mark of optimism.
5. Value even the smallest.
Children find joy in the smallest of things. One of the girls in my group was so happy to have colored her art piece with every color in the crayon box. This made me realize to value even the smallest of accomplishments. Next time you are feeling down and unmotivated remember that even the smallest of steps is better than you had been the step before.
6. Try new things.
Kids are not afraid to play a new game they have never tried. They are willing to do anything if it is foreign to them. They do not think of the consequences and are not afraid to take risks. I believe the older we get the more fear we have for unknown. We tend to stay in our comfort zone and rarely leave it but what we forget is that venturing out helps us grow! It awakens our spirit and creates a fun adrenaline. Life is boring when you stay with in the limits you have set for yourself. Kids reminded me to take some risks and be adventurous.
7. Have fun, laugh and love!
Life is about doing things that make you happy. So do them! Take a chance you never know what will happen. I am abroad and I wanted to seize the opportunity to volunteer at an elementary school. I have gotten so much pleasure and joy from it. These kids are always having having fun, laughing at everything and giving so much love. You should do the same.