Sixteen-Year-Old Teacher, Eighteen-Year-Old Sophomore

November 17, 2007
By Gabrielle Molinaro, Norfolk, VA

Derrick and Jaron. I like to think of them as The Gang Member and The Annoying Little Freshman. They were my partners for the computer project, and unfortunately they were not the studious type. I could not argue with my teacher though. So far they had come in late more than once, slept in class or acted like they didn’t care. I was not the only one who was going to do the work, though they probably would have been fine with that. I wanted them to participate and learn something.

I was sitting right there ready to help if any questions arose. While I was letting Derrick have a turn on the project, Jaron had out his math homework and had questions for me. With my limited math abilities, I was helping him the best I could. At the end of the bell, I realized I was more than a partner; I felt like a teacher.

I believe everyone can graduate. Inside every child is the “want” to learn new things. Everyone has it. Teachers, or even partners, need to bring that out of a child. They need to encourage that child. Students who are “a real piece of work,” cannot be given up on or they will give up on themselves. Anyone can graduate if they apply themselves and know they are not on the journey alone. I believe a person should not expect a child to do well without helping them. Some need more help than others. Even the toughest hotshots can get scared if they think they have to go at it alone. Kids have untapped potential. Once it’s accessed and applied, they can succeed.

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