Mid-Placement Personal Development Reflection

During our mid-term review, we had to get into groups and reflect on how we have developed since the start of this ICS placement. I thought I would share these:

1. What have I learnt?

-To rely on God and give each day to him. The days that have not gone so well are the days I haven’t read the bible or prayed to him.
-To manage young adults and understand that they all come with different personalities and backgrounds.
-As I am an independent person, I usually just do for myself. I have learnt to delegate and share duties even if I get frustrated with how others are doing the task, as well as ask for help.
-To not be too hard on myself and encourage myself.
-To be more sympathetic when others have personal problems or illness.
-Learnt about MDG’s and poverty around the world
-One small thing can make the biggest difference in another person’s eyes.
-About South African culture
-That a lot of things go on behind close doors e.g. Sex trafficking, unregistered Creches

What experience so far has impacted you?

Usually I don’t like to talk about my faith with non-believers unless they ask about it or sometime feel embarrassed about it especially praying in front of others. However, in the hostel I have lead bible studies, prayers and discussions with traveller wandering around. Sometime they have asked more questions and been curious, which has helped me feel more confident. From this, we have had two German girls ask us about coming to church with us, which wouldn’t have happened if we were not open and freely talking about God.

Another experience which has impacted me is that my team have grown spiritually; having a deeper relationship with God, reading bibles more or prayer to him throughout the day. One of my team members felt that God was calling her to fast and during these time God revealed so much to her about her future and things to have a heart for. It just shows that God listens to our prayers and shows us different things about our or other’s lives.

I was really amazed by one of the boys in the Crèches, who stunned me. I had planned several phonics lessons for the teachers as well as a list of high frequency words that children need to be able to learnt by a certain age. The teacher brought a child to me who read all the words fluently and this just made my insides cry with joy. I love seeing children learn and at that moment I felt like a proud mother, even though I had no influence over this learning.

How have you been challenged?

While being on the ICS placement, I have been challenged, stretched and grown. I have been challenged to come out my comfort zone by praying aloud, talking about my faith openly and leading worship in from of a group, Also, I’ve been faced with confrontation and conflict, which I’m not particular comfortable dealing with as I like to be in peace with others. I have seen things in the creches that have lead me to tears about the way children have been treated. I have found managing young adults from different culture difficult at times as they have had different upbringings and ways of doing things.

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Short lived

Today has been a difficult day in some ways. Attending a memorial service is never a pleasant experience, especially when she was a young, energetic, inspirational teacher.

I first met her several years ago, when she started her career at my Mums school: she was so full of life and so passionate about children developing and growing. I got to know her a little when I wanted to obtain my teaching qualification; finding out about teaching; getting interview tips. Since then, every time I saw her, she would fill the room with her presence and caring nature even after all the things she went through.

Several years ago, she was diagnosed with cancer; carried out treatment; beat her fight even though she looked weak and lost her hair. Last year while on holiday, she collapsed and soon learnt that she had some brain tumours. Through treatment, doctors managed to get rid of one but the other was still there; not growing. Just over a month ago, she had pain so consulted the doctor and found she had more tumours. Soon they realised that she wouldn’t respond to treatment. A couple days later, she died.

From the crowds and the tears sliding down many faces; she was loved and will be truly missed.

It makes me aware of how lucky we are to have life but also how life can run away from us; how life can disappear in a split second; how life can fade from the young; how much we can impact others in our short lives. We need to live one day at a time, inspiring those around us, living to the maximise.

How much can we take this for granted?

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