Building Friendships in the Classroom

May 19, 2011 at 2:17 PM | Posted in AmeriCorps, Class, Community, ESOL, Student Stories, Teaching | Leave a comment
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While our number one priority is to increase our student’s literacy skills, there are certain other services that are as important and that we probably rarely think about. For example, in our classes students become friends. They build relationships that sometimes go beyond the classroom. Certainly this helps our students feel like they are part of a community and that they are not alone, that there are other people going through the same problems and trying to reach the same objectives.

In one of my classes three people that speak two different languages became friends, and this helped the classroom environment a lot. The two students from Pakistan became ill during the session, and so the student from Sudan would call, using the little English she knew, to find out how the other two students were doing. It takes a lot of courage to pick-up the phone and speak in a language you just started learning, but it also demonstrates how comfortable these students were with each other. I hope that these students continue to be friends and learn together. 

-Jose Flores, Lead Teacher and AmeriCorps Member

 

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