WOW! Somehow the weeks since I’ve been back in America have truly flown by. I feel like it was just yesterday I was teaching my 3rd graders the different types of adjectives, walking alongside the indescribable traffic, or packing my bags to head home. I know I’ve said this before, but I am truly so grateful to have had this experience in India. Most people are not fortunate enough to say that they not only spent 7 weeks in India, but they TAUGHT for 7 weeks in India. Tomorrow, I begin my first day of Student Teaching and I feel so at ease knowing the valuable experience I gained teaching this summer. If I could manage a classroom of 40 students, a class of 17 should be a breeze!! (right?!?!!!)
The second I got home, everybody asked, “How was India?” which was such a challenging question. How do I sum up a life changing, 7-week experience into a short conversation? I would do my best to tell them the most exciting parts of the trip and show them pictures but to be honest, the most influential parts of the trip were the small pieces that didn’t make it to the conversation. They were the moments my students gave me the BIGGEST hug because they didn’t want me to leave. Or the moments laughing with my teachers about something funny a student said. Or the laughs I shared with everyone on my trip around the dinner table. They were the small moments that made this trip what it was. I wish I wore a “Go Pro” on my forehead everyday so everybody could really get a glimpse into “how India was”!
I think about my students and teachers at AECS Magnolia very often. The way they welcomed me into their school with wide arms and the way they went out of their way to help me with quite literally anything left a lasting impact on me. I will never forget the smiles that formed on students faces as I walked the hallways or the endless waves I received every day. As I start Student Teaching tomorrow, I can assure you I will not receive nearly the number of waves as I did at Magnolia. What I can assure you of though is that I will carry the skills of classroom management and forming meaningful, lasting relationships with my students and teachers back home. I am so ready to apply these this year!
Traveling to India will be an experience I share with my future students for endless years to come. I’m looking forward to sharing pictures with them from when I visited the Taj Mahal, had an elephant trunk on my head, played basketball outside with my students, taught them English, successfully took on the crazy traffic of India, shopped (of course!), and every single other amazing thing I was able to experience. Who knows, maybe one day I will have a student from India enter my classroom…and that day will be SUCH a special day for not only me, but for them.
One last HUGE thank you to my amazing teachers, students, Sheral, Chad, my fellow classmates, The Smiths, and my mom. Without you all, this trip would not have been what it was.