So I was browsing some of the other blogs before, and realized that almost none of them have any sort of prompts on their volunteering experience. Clearly, the expectations about what we need to have done was severly mistaken. Regardless, I am going to suck it up and tap into my photographic memory to recall my semester of volunteering.
My first day at PCY, an after school program for kids located in North Minneapolis, I was given a rundown of the format of the kids day. Snack, time to do homework or study, and free time afterwards. Each week the kids got to explore anything that they wanted to learn more about and do research to present something at the end of each week. It's a great concept, and I was on board right away. Since I love working with kids, this is right up my alley.
Everytime I come in, the kids are in the homework part of their day. The first day, I was placed into Mr. Green's third and fourth grade class and started by helping a young girl with her homework. After we were done, she told me about the sit-ins play they were practicing for Black History Month. The rest of the day, I sat in and watch the kids practice for their play.
The next few times, I went in and either helped the kids with their homework, and when they went to the gym I stood off to the side and watched the kids play kickball or big base. I worked closely with a few specific kids who had homework consistantly over the next weeks, and grew a close bond with them. For two consecutive weeks I helped the kids with homework and when time to go to the gym came around, we ended up staying in Mr. Green's classroom, the first time naming the oceans and continents, and the second time we named the fifty states. The kids were asking me how to spell words, and we had a lot of fun trying to name all the states.
One time, when we were lined up for the gym, the kids were analyzing my outfit. They noticed a ring on my finger and began asking if I was married and how old I am. I told them that the ring isn't on the right finger to be married, and they told me that I should marry Santa Claus. This made me laugh. Another time, on a nice day, we went outside and the kids were throwing a football around. I joined in for a little bit, but am hardly athletic enough to keep up with those kids.
The last time I went into volunteer, all the kids were in the general area of PCY as opposed to Mr. Green's classroom. There were other kids that I didn't recognize, so I knew that some of the other grade's teachers must have been gone, and Mr. Green had taken on a few more classes. They were sitting at tables doing their homework, and I started helping one young boy with his homework. Afterwards, we went to the gym again and the kids played dodgeball, all against Mr. Green. I decided to join in this time, and got the workout of a lifetime. Eventually the teams were boys against girls, and us girls were formulating strategies to beat the boys. By the end, I was panting and could hardly breath. I love this place. I went in yesterday to volunteer and found out that the program was cancelled for the day so last week was my last day counted for our class. I am going to continue volunteering however, until I begin my full-time job in June.
Man, can I write a lot.