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Teachers' Tips:
The Power of Encouragement


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Of course we know about encouraging students. We see how their faces shine when we comment positively on their progress! What about teachers? Who encourages them?

An ESL teacher from Texas writes:
"I have been a little discouraged lately...one of those 'slump' times. One of those times when you wonder, Why am I here? Are these people really benefiting from all this? I really need some encouragement."

Have you ever asked yourself these questions?

Have you ever felt like that? I've had my "slump" times too, and one kind word can do wonders to lift my spirits and give me back my true perspective. How helpful it can be to share our successes, failures, joys, and disappointments with one another.

Looking with New Eyes
A week later this same teacher wrote: "This afternoon I stood in front of my class...speaking from my mind and praying in my heart...and then it happened.

Juanice at computer I looked into the big brown eyes of Victor (19 years old), our new student, fresh from Mexico. From outward appearances, he looked as though he would rather be anywhere else.
But I saw the look, I felt the tug, I recognized the 'hunger.' It was as though the Lord was saying to me, 'Look at him, really look at him. See him with My eyes.'

When I looked into his eyes again, I could see the desire to understand, the hunger to know more, and the fear of being in a place so strange and new. It's entirely possible he was understanding two of every six or seven words.

A Treasured Moment
It was one of those treasured moments that the Lord gives us to keep us going. It makes us wonder, "Why did I ever wonder why I'm here?" I'm sure you've experienced the same thing.


"I want
   to encourage
      you"

I wanted to share this with you, because I want to encourage you and others that those of us who are new to instructing English look to you, like Victor, with those wide eyes of wonderment and fear. For the times we feel so inadequate and tremble in our boots, it is so good to have those of you 'who have gone before us' share what you have learned and encourage us to continue on."

"Kind words produce their own beautiful image in person's soul. Everyone knows the pleasure of receiving a kind look, a warm greeting, a hand held out in time of need. And such gestures can be made at so little expense, yet they bring such dividends."
                ~The War Cry~

Take a peek at the Teers' Texas ministry

Editor's Note:
Would you like to share some of your classroom experiences?
Would you like to encourage other teachers?
We'd love to hear from you.
E-mail your responses:   jrmeads@worldnet.att.net


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ESL Ministry
Walnut Creek Presbyterian Church
1801 Lacassie Avenue Ball Walnut Creek Ball California 94596 Ball  925-935-1574
Joanne Rae Meads Ball jrmeads@worldnet.att.net
Updated
September 16, 1999

© Copyright 1999 by Joanne Meads, All Rights Reserved