Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Fountain of Youth

2010 was the year right before Christmas. I started a new job as an afterschool group leader. Employed by SLC Recreation however work location was @ Lincoln Elementary. Coming into an environment that I was kind of nervous about. I almost didn't take the job. Just because we were raised with a "No Ask Policy" in our home. Meaning if mom & dad say it, you better do it zero tolerance for asking "But why mom? "Why dad?." Funny when we think back to it. But not funny if we got caught slipping. So working with kids meant I'd have to learn to listen better & learn not to be demanding. Which up to this day I'm still working hard at :)

Well by time the first week ended & I got to work with this amazing staff. I fell in love with the kids & my co-workers. Mon-Fri  each day beginning at 2:30pm-6:30pm unless there was a city event or field trip. In a short amount of time they taught me so much about myself. How I communicate with my fellowmen/women, what approaches to take to be more effective in communicating & they taught me how to love more. Sounds kind of weird maybe. However it's true! At the beginning of this journey I was reminded daily of how to work by love. Because many of these kids needed someone to not only be there leader but express appropriate forms of love. For instance words of encouragement, patience, goal-setting and follow through. Which meant as leader if your going to say your going to do something. That child would count on you to do it. Our word had to be our bond.


Talent Show Pearly Shells :)

Gateway Discovery Center 1st Field Trip

It never felt like work with the kids but didn't mean we didn't have our fair share of hard days. Kids crying, whining about activities, girls arguring of who's friend was who's, boys roughing each other up, parents getting loud over nothing etc etc. But the upside of that we got through it all because we work together, had each other's back & didn't sweat the small stuff. If we did sweat anything we'd help each other to get over it quick. Plus we got to visit a lot of neat  places here in Salt Lake City. That otherwise I probably wouldn't have ever gone to just because.

Ice Skating @ the U w/Edwin Jr

Clark Planterium with Breanna & Katelynn

Hogle Zoo w/the Zoo Keepers :)

Sarah chilling w/the kids @ Classic Skating

My experience with working this past year & during our Lincoln/Woodrow Summer Program has left me more educated. Just as I've had to come to terms with leaving our Ward YSA Adult program. Resigning from Lincoln Elementary has only better prepared me for the future. I've always wanted to be a teacher. And through these amazing young youth. I know their examples & live personalities will remind me invest in our youth today. And they will grow to take care of us in their adulthood. Words could never express the impact they've been in my life. That I will forever carry them in my heart. So when I have children of my own. I will apply what they taught me in this place that will stand as my fountain of youth to constantly revisit when needed. 


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