by Sydney Shultz, City Year New Hampshire AmeriCorps Member serving on the Gossler Park Elementary School team generously supported by Dartmouth-Hitchcock and Lincoln Financial
Walking into Gossler Park Elementary School as a City Year AmeriCorps Member on the first day of school was an overwhelming yet fulfilling experience. After meeting my fourth grade students in homeroom the first hour of class, I could tell I wasn't the only one who was nervous. I watched as the students in my classroom kept looking around at one another in anticipation; thinking about what they'd be doing for the rest of the day, who they'd meet, and what they'd learn. The same thoughts were running through my mind in that moment, too.
My partner teacher is a kind woman and the sort of teacher who provides her students with both warmth and firmness. In the time I've had the opportunity to work with her, I have learned so much about managing a classroom and working with students’ strengths. I have yet to have a single day where I haven't learned something about a hard part of a student's home life, or the struggles they have with the subject matter. It has been a trying experience to adapt to my students' needs based on previous knowledge I have from my time with children, but the experience has been so rewarding.
My favorite part of the day isn't necessarily the hugs from my kids, or their smiles on the playground at recess—although those things are spectacular. My favorite part is watching these students proudly raise their hands when they think they know the answer to a question. Learning along with my students every day is something I've had to adjust to, but I'm very excited for the rest of my school year with City Year New Hampshire and Gossler Park.
Join City Year on January 9th for a Shadow Day to learn about becoming a City Year AmeriCorps member! Hear from a panel of currently serving members and alumni, learn about the impact you can make as a mentor, and visit one of our partner schools! RSVP by Friday, December 22 or contact Jason Bonilla (firstname.lastname@example.org) for more information. Shadow Day events will also be taking place in Boston, Providence and New York on January 9th.
If you or someone you know is interested in joining City Year, click here for information about the application process. The next application deadline is January 26th.