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2-25-08 at Green Central

Yet another day in the life of fourth graders at Green Central. I had lots of fun today, as a matter of fact. Not many of the kids had homework to work on, but there were several different activities to participate in. I actually got to work one on one with a hispanic boy who doesn't speak much english. I quizzed him on his multiplication facts. To start with, he tried to say some of the answers in spanish, and some of those he did say in english he was getting wrong. I wasn't sure if he was just saying the wrong numbers because he wasn't sure of their translation into english or because he didn't know the math problem. I encouraged him to try to say the answers in english, and for some of them, he wrote the answers on paper, asking me for clarification of the english words for the numbers. He eventually was giving all of the answers in english, and getting most of them right. I got really excited, to be honest. Later, he started asking me questions about myself, and I gently corrected his grammar, and had him repeat his questions agian correctly. I don't know how much I actually taught him, but I think my encouragement helped him to have a desire to learn and use his english. At one point, he discovered that I speak French, and he started asking me how to say this or that phrase in French. What a desire to learn! After several minutes, and a page full of words in french I had written out for him tucked in his backpack, I kindly suggested that we work on his English first. He just smiled at me. After study time, I went down to the gym and played three on three basketball with some of the older boys and some other volunteers. we had a blast, and I think some good connections were made. Kids really appreciate volunteers playing with them. It forms a bond that they wouldn't have if all we did was tell them what to do all the time. that is one of the strengths of ACES in my opinion. Well that's it for now, Matt Out.