Community Volunteering Experience (ECS 200)

ECS200 — GO GIRLS!

The Main Goals of Volunteering:
For my current Educational Core Studies (ECS) class, the main component is to complete twenty hours of volunteering within a community organization.  The idea is to break us out of school thinking and into an environment where we may feel uncomfortable, where we have to think on our toes, and where we interact with people other than teachers and students.

Why I Chose Go Girls!:
We (the students) were given a list of about fourty organizations to choose from.  Of these fourty, I asked to be placed into the GO GIRLS! program which is run by the Big Sisters organization under the supervision of the YWCA.  I chose this program because it allowed me to develop a real relationship with the people I would be helping and make a difference on a deeper level.  As one of two mentors of a group of eight girls, I felt confident that the relationships I was looking to build were definitely an option through GO GIRLS!

Extra Bonus:
With GO GIRLS!, the mentors are given a binder with a curriculum in it that needs to be followed weekly.  We are allowed to change it up to make it fit our group of girls more accurately, but in the end there is a concept we have to make sure the girls attain.  I love this because it merely further prepares me for becoming a teacher someday.

My Role in GO GIRLS!:
I was considered a mentor for these girls.  While I was there to teach them a lesson about self-respect and respect for others, I was also there to listen to them.  Some of the girls that are apart of the GO GIRLS! program come from rough neighbourhoods and family situations.  We are there to be supports for the girls.  If they come to trust us and wish to confide in us, they are encouraged to do so.

What I am going to take from GO GIRLS! into my teaching career:
(i)   The ability to change up old lessons to spice it up and make it applicable to the new audience (students)
(ii)  I want to encourage my students to come to me to talk about anything, not just school relationships or academic concerns.  I want to be there for the students in every area of their lives.
(iii)  The understanding that every child is unique and different in their own ways.  And sometimes the lesson plan has to be changed up in order to cater to those vastly different personalities and learning techniques.

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