Speech given by volunteer Priscilla Zobel at final celebration in Queretaro, Mexico:
How many of you remember when you decided to become a teacher?
How many of you remember a teacher who changed your life, a teacher who encouraged you?
How many of you can remember feeling that a teacher believed in you?
How many of you had a teacher who pushed you hard to learn more and you did NOT like that pushing – but later, much later perhaps, you wanted to thank her/him because the pushing made a difference?
All of you have made a difference in our lives here.
We have seen some of your passions.
We have seen some of your students “light up” when they understood, when they got the pronunciation right.
We have seen the “light” in their eyes because they lean on YOU!
We have learned that this program is a success. This success can be attributed to your investment in your students and the passion with which you approach your love of teaching.
During these two weeks, we have had contact with more than 200 students in class and as we waited for conversation opportunities outside the cafeteria.
Each day in each group I have worked with, I have seen at least one student “light up.” I have seen these same “sparks” from students who approach us for conversation while we waited for them.
We have witnessed your students feel the power of their words and the new power that comes with learning a new language.
We accepted your gift of an invitation to come and speak with your students these two weeks.
It is a gift we will remember and cherish and your students have become a part of our lives.
We thank you so much!