When we moved here...we were so excited to volunteer with a Foster Home here and had no plans to teach English...
unless VISAs required us too... yet somehow here I am 18 months later .....
teaching English at a preschool.
Not what I had planned.
(On this day of preschool half the class was away)
I've learned via other Expats that EVERYONE assumes you're an English Teacher when your living in China and EVERYONE will come knocking at your door asking you to teach their child.
...and it doesn't matter how many times you say, "No, I'm not a teacher" or
"No, I homeschool my children, I have no time......"
They are not deterred....they keep on coming and asking...
In our situation, we decided fairly early on that we wanted Lukai to attend School. I tried to home school him, but it just wasn't the right fit for him. He is SOCIAL and I think Homeschooling would have frustrated him.
So off he went to a local preschool that was recommended to us, and we were amazed at how quickly his fluency of Mandarin came back to him and how quickly he made friends.
But as all things via school related here in China is, I became aware of how EXPENSIVE schooling is for expats!!! The kids are not permitted to attend 'local' schools so we are left with private/international ones.....they are like the schools from 'Dead Poets Society' . These school are gorgeous!
But we couldn't sustain the tuition....
Then came the request, as we were praying what to do, come and teach an English hour 3xs a week there...
Well, we had been praying for a clear open or closed door. So with alot of fear, I said 'Yes' and I quickly immersed myself with TESOL for preschoolers.
Sites like Super Simple Learning became my lifeline.
I was shocked and amazed at how I was able to put together an 1hour curriculum that included awesome ways of teaching Greetings, Alphabet, Phonics,Calendar, Weather, Colors, Shapes, Story time, Craft time, Parts of the Body, with loads of great singing and games.
This is something I am thrilled to brag about...because I can say ~
it was totally the Lord.
He did it.
He showed me e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g. I had not a clue!
I take no credit at how incredible these classes have become.
Attendance doubled within a few months at the preschool as word spread about the class. The Teachers were thrilled! The Parents were so happy. And we are able to send Lukai with his tuition paid. He was so happy.
And once again, God provided a way.
This was never part of our plan when coming here ~ we were only thinking about the Foster Home. But this opportunity has allowed us into the community in a whole new deeper way. We are making friends because of it.
We are building relationships because of it.
We can share our faith because of it...
Not what I had planned ~
I was reminded this week as I was feeling frustrated at the little we are contributing here, that I need to remain faithful to where He has us planted. He has a purpose that He is unfolding, and I have a part.
It may be a teeny tiny part, and that's okay,
I just need to remain faithful and trust Him to bloom where I am planted.
I am reminded that the opportunities I have to build relationship here is precious.
I have nothing to share without relationship.
And maybe that is all this 'Teaching Thing' is about....building relationships within the community.
Or maybe I will take this new skill and use it elsewhere...who knows
It doesn't matter, I don't need to see the whole plan.....I need to trust.
And today on this stormy day, when half the class didn't show up, and the older boys, my boy was SO NAUGHTY...
I can remember that, be faithful with the 'talet' He has given me and prove myself a good and worthy Servant.
...and love on these kids every moment I can...
...and shine Christ's love and truth among the Buddist Teachers...
We were serving somewhere else as well, that I can't share online,
but politics being what they are here....that awesome door sadly got shut fast.
As I process that change, my heart ached for more....
and I was reminded this week that this Teaching Opportunity IS from Him.
(Here they are, as they like to sing good bye to me...
tackling me ...and then falling off of me onto eachother... )
(...someone got a foot to the head...I think I know whose kid too
*sigh* Lukai )