Twice a year, volunteers have to submit a VRF (Volunteer Reporting Form), which summarizes the different projects done during the time period and their statistics, to the Peace Corps Thailand Office. In turn, Peace Corps Thailand can report to PC headquarters in Washington on the activities and number of people influenced in the country. There is a special section where it asks you to tell your success story, something that cannot be summarized in numbers. I would like to share what I wrote last time with you…
The theme for my success story is “confidence builder”. Yesterday, I was teaching my final day at the bratome for this school year. I had written a paragraph using words we had learned. Then, we played a game to test their reading comprehension: Here is the paragraph and the questions:
First, I wake up. Next, I go downstairs to eat breakfast. At 8 o’clock am, I leave for school. The school is between the restaurant and the rice field. A soccer field is next to the school. I study English at school. Afterwards, I go to the restaurant to eat lunch. I order fried rice. At 1 o’clock pm, I return to school. Finally, I bike home and watch TV. Then, I brush my teeth and go to bed.
- When do you leave for school?
- Where is the school?
- What do you do before you eat lunch?
- What do you do last?
- For lunch, what do you eat?
- The school is next to what?
- What do you do after you bike home?
- What do you do after you wake up?
I showed the paragraph to my third period class (5th graders), and a girl in the front row immediately got a frightened look on her face. Pretty much all the faces in that class seemed to say “There is no way I can do this!” But I believed in them. I first got them through reading the paragraph. I think some of the kids were surprised they could read so much at once. Next, I showed them the questions. They were so into the game and got most of the questions right! The girl who had the scared look on her face was one of the leaders in answering the questions. I was teaching more than just English that day, I was teaching that you can do the impossible.