Something incredibly touching and neat happened to me on Friday at work. As I was leaving Kid's Camp to go on my 30-minute break, I happened to cross paths with one of my favorite little children in my class, Philipp. He, like the other kids in my class, is 5 years old. He is the shortest of the boys in our group. He has a smile that lights up his face. White blonde hair that comes almost to his chin, big blue eyes and a light barely noticeable smattering of freckles across his nose. When he laughs, his eyes almost close as his grin and cheeks light up with joy. He LOVES to play Uno more then anything and asks me numerous times every day to "please you play Uno with me, Brooke??" He often comes over to me, clamors onto my lap, touches my hair, gives me a hug. But mostly, he just loves, loves, loves to play Uno with me <3. I have noticed his English improving as the weeks have passed. It took me about 3 days to teach him the phrase "deal the cards." But now as we sit down to play Uno, he looks up at me through long-lashed eyes and asks "I deal the cards??"
The other day when I returned from my break, he ran up to me, asking me to play Uno with him. I declined, telling him I needed to go upstairs to grab snack for the kids. My jaw dropped as he looked up at me and said "I come with you? I missed you." I have never heard him use that phrase, nor did I know he even knew it. Wow. My heart warmed to the core.
And finally, back to my original story. I was leaving Kid's Camp on Friday to go on my break when I crossed paths with him, his Mom and his little brother, Julius. She stopped me to say hello, the same broad, warm smile on her face that Philipp has as well, and we chatted briefly. She told me "Philipp has been speaking so much English at home, Brooke. Its really, really neat. Before you came to Kid's Camp, he spoke none. Zero. He didn't really like the previous English teacher. But I think he really, really likes you."
I looked down at him to be met with him smiling up at me.
This moment made my week.
A large number of the other children approach me frequently now and are speaking in English with me too. There are just a few children who are more hesitant, shy and seem to have a bit more difficulty grasping the language. But most of them have been approaching me more often as time continues to pass, speaking with me more and more. I love this.
This is the part of my job I adore.
“If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.” ~Mother Teresa