adVENTure ::Day 2::

Last Saturday I was invited to a get-together/party during the afternoon so I postponed my tutoring of Abdala the Wadi Seerian kid to Monday afternoon.

Usually when I go to a student’s house for the second time (the first is always with them or with exact specific directions) I get the directions right but somehow mess up when I’m around a block away from them and end up calling them to make sure that I was in the right place.  This is the first time in the history of my tutoring that I found the place on only my second time without a problem.  It wasn’t that hard.

I got there only to find that Abdala’s mom had sent him to the pharmacy to get something and he was supposed to be home by the time i got there but he was running late or something. So I waited. In the living room. Alone. Not a very good idea.  I just kept imagining actually living there and I couldn’t handle the prospect of having to deal with this kind of life day in and day out and not have any hope for bettering the situation because there was no money to scrimp and save.

The living room is clean and cool- almost cold. It’s a long rectangle with hard purple couches and sofas.  It was too clean, too bare, and pretty shabby.  The long hospital-like white walls were empty except for two very dusty small (oh very small) gold framed pictures (I’m not sure what was on them because they were pretty dusty but it was most likely some verse from the Quran or the 99 names of Allah or something).  It was just too bare and too clean. As if no one actually used the room.

However, the moment I started teaching him I completely forgot the shabbiness and terribleness and focused on reteaching this kid how to read correctly.  In the beginning, he stuttered and wasn’t all too confident because this was not the typical school book type that he was used to. The six books I brough were small rectangles; four red and two green.  They went something like this: ‘Sam sat. Cat sat. Dog sat. Cat sat on Sam.’ The good thing about these books is that they keep repeating what the previous books contained so the kids will never forget how to sound out the short ‘a’ sound and the like.

But after we read the stories 4 times (in between going over what new words meant and how new vowels sounded and repeating the words he didn’t know) Abdala was pretty fluent with the sounds of the words and was very confident in his ability to read them correctly.  I brought up some new words for him with the same vowel sounds and he read them with ease. That was pretty much what we did for two hours. Read and discussed what we read and went over new words and new sounds.

I have realized that kids here tend to mess up between their s and c, b and d, and c and k. And Abdala was no exception. But that’s for another post.

It’s so rewarding seeing him gain confidence in his skills in the English language and I’m so happy I didn’t quit from the first day. Yes, this is a challenge but one I’m ready and fully prepared to take on and will be so disappointed with myself if I don’t see it through.


7 Responses to “adVENTure ::Day 2::”

  1. good for you klod-hopper! go gettum!

  2. yeah and the best part is when they are so happy that they were able to do it!

  3. personally i think foriegn language needs to be taught at a younger age because thats when its easiest to learn it. Isnt it odd how its easier to learn without even realising or being self aware of your own understanding better than the exact opposite in say college?

  4. decayedsoul: i agree. its so much easier learning two three or even more languages from the crib than when you’re older. thats why parents should know more languages and expose their children to them from even before they are born.

    and i don’t believe in all the bull about kids being confused when growing in a multilangual household. we don’t give kids as much credit as they deserve.

  5. I totally agree with both of you. If you can remember grade school, a lot of the courses were redundant. If they cut down on them and added language immersion programs (especially languages without the latin alphabet) it would be a step forward.

  6. I would have loved to learn languages as a kid, but we didn’t start till I was 12, by which time I could *feel* my brain trying to soak it up, but I wasn’t able to.

    It’s great that you have a chance to help the kid. 🙂

  7. […] to tutor her second son. That’s going to be so much fun.  The mother of my newest student (the Wadi Seerian kid) just found out today that I’m only going to be tutoring til the end of June if that long […]

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