Working with elementary children is challenging, but rewarding. This year in my American Literature class, my teacher organized a high-school student/second-grade pen pal project where high school students serve as role models for second-graders to promote literacy by writing to each other. After reading Twain's The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, we wrote a summary so a second-grader could read and understand it.
Recently the second-graders spent the day with us. It was exciting to see them "Oohing and ahhhing" at all the "big" things in our school. You never know what small children will say or do next. We each took our "pal" for a tour of the school. Their favorite part was going onto the football field where we played games. Some of the high school students were wrapped in toilet paper by the second-graders as a contest.
The children have a lot of energy. You need a lot of patience to work with them. I got to read the book, The Fourth Little Pig, to my pen pals. For that, I got lots of hugs! I felt good to spend time with them and be a role model as well as have a good time. fl
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.