I cannot believe that in a few more days my work at the Gan will come to an end. Never in my wildest imagination did I expect to become so attached to the staff and the children during a three week placement. I expected an opportunity to experience an immersion into a segment of the Israeli culture. What I received was that and more.
All the staff members warmly included me in the daily process. I got to know and relate to the children, helping them navigate their social relationships such as how to express needs rather than crying , how to ask to share something rather than grabbing, how to use words rather than bullying. When I read stories to the children I was able to reinforce recently acquired concepts such as shapes, colors, counting and object recognition. This was a great way to bolster my Hebrew vocabulary.
When children came into the classroom following nap time, I was able to help them gain competency in putting on their shoes and differentiating right from left.
Added to this wonderful mix were the parents who were equally welcoming. When arriving to pick up their children some parents spent time asking for my
Feedback on my contacts with their children and asking for follow up suggestions.
All of this was far more than I had ever expected from a volunteer experience— to be able to see the incremental gains of the children from week to week and to soak up the conversations with 3-4 year olds- their curiosity and positive view of the world in observing the simplest of things
I was also able to see, first hand, the competence and professionalism of the entire staff. They have finely tuned their working relationships and their abilities to build upon each child’s potentialities.
My family and friends will now be subjected to my going on ad Infinitum about these delicious children and all that we did together
Thank you Skilled Volunteers in Israel for arranging this ideal placement. You truly did hear me when I spoke of my passions and interests