I have always wanted to be a kindergarten teacher. The idea of being surrounded by different kids as a profession is something that ignites my soul. I cannot anymore remember when I started wanting to become a kindergarten teacher, but I know a big part of it was because of the book I read by Ines Bautista–Yao titled What’s In Your Heart.

Even though the book falls under the romance genre, what struck me was not the love story encompassing it, but the way the protagonist tries her best to guide the kindergartners in her class. Every time I read it, I see her profession as something I want to take hold of.

Although that is the case, that thought is something I have accepted that I can only vicariously achieve since my parents have instilled in my mind that a high-paying job is more valuable than an enjoyable one. 

I find it saddening when I think about it before but I realized that I should not be saddened because there are a lot of ways I can be a kindergarten teacher not only through making it my profession. One example of those ways is through volunteering as an online teacher, which I recently did.

Last August 3, 2020, when I saw my senior high school batchmate share a post on social media related to volunteering as an online teacher, I hurriedly messaged her saying that I am willing to volunteer. I felt like it was a chance for me to be a kindergarten teacher, even if it is just as an online volunteer.

When I was messaged by a moderator saying “Hi teach”, I felt immense joy. I never thought that there would come a time that I will be referred to as a teacher. She sent me some promotional videos to orient me on what will happen and frankly speaking, I felt disheartened.

My idea of online teaching was far from the program I joined in. Instead of it being like a typical online class, it turned out to be just a Facebook Messenger-based thing. There were no video calls, just purely chat. Another thing that dismayed me was the fact that the kids I am going to engage with are not kindergartners, but 1st and 2nd graders. 

Despite my dismay, I still pushed through with volunteering as an online teacher. Instead of making use of my time doing unproductive things (which my dad hates), I realized that it is better to allot some of my time to helping other people.

During my first day as a volunteer online teacher, which was August 6, 2020, everyone welcomed me warmly. In the chat group, they referred to me as “teach Aaliziyah”. The feeling was so heartwarming because even though I was just a new volunteer, they were all including me in their morning greetings.

Since the shift I took was in the morning, the majority of the people I engaged with in the group chat were mothers. They were the ones messaging me in lieu of their children. There were two activities in the morning namely daily devotions and games. As a volunteer online teacher, my task was to take screenshots of all the activities the kids have sent in the group chat. After taking screenshots, I must put it on the Google Docs file that was shared with me.

During the daily devotions, a moderator sent a bible verse to the group chat and the mothers shared the insights they have regarding it. Some of them accompanied their reflections with a prayer. Although they have different ways of expressing their prayers, the overall theme was safety and guidance in time of this pandemic.

During the games, the kids were tasked to draw something they can find in their homes. Some drew clothes, pets, and their own houses, but what struck me was the one who drew her mom. While I was taking screenshots, I cannot help but feel sentimental because, among everything she sees in her home, she chose to draw the person who gives light to it.

What I consider the highlight of my first day as a volunteer online teacher was when one of the mothers of the kids I engaged with messaged me. She told me how happy she and her kid was for my volunteering.

When my shift ended, I did not think that someone in the group would bother contacting me. Unlike other volunteer online teachers, I only knew about the program two weeks before its end. Because of that, the time I spent with the kids and their mothers were just short compared to the other volunteers.

I never thought I would be remembered, so it really brought me joy when someone from the group messaged me.

The second day of my volunteering happened last August 13, 2020. Unlike the first one, there was not much of engagements. The class still had daily devotions, but because their summer graduation is scheduled on August 15, 2020, instead of games, the activity that they did was read messages from volunteers.

My shift ended at 12 pm, but during the afternoon some of the mothers mentioned me in the group chat. It turned out that the afternoon shift activities for that day included thanking all the volunteers who had been with them since the start of the pandemic.

Although only a couple of the people in the group chat remembered to include me on their thank you notes, I was still happy because they made me feel that I was part of it all.


Hello,

Thank you for reading! I appreciate it a lot.

I was supposed to accompany this blog post with pictures and screenshots to show what happened during my volunteering day, but I signed a contract prohibiting me to do such things. Because of that, I have decided to try as much as possible to vividly express how it went. I hope I managed to do that.

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Love,

Aaliziyah

64 thoughts on “A Recap on My Volunteering Experience

  1. Teaching, more so doing it as volunteer work, can be quite challenging but definitely one of the most fulfilling things anyone can do in his/her lifetime. I spent most of my college years teaching Cathechism to kids in urban poor communities on the weekends. And it was always a delight seeing them sing, smile, and dance to what you teach them. I terribly miss their hugs and high-fives and the joy it has brought has stayed in my heart for a lifetime. Hope you’ll get the chance to volunteer again. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Aww go for your passion and your gut feeling! I also have parents who used to be very critical in everything I do. Sabi nila distraction lang yan or wala ka namang pera dyan. However, at the end of the day, money doesn’t mean anything if your heart isn’t fulfilled. Your story is an inspiring one, I hope you keep doing you! Never stop to do the things that matter to you. So much love for you and I can’t wait to read more in your blog ♥️

    Liked by 1 person

  3. We have parents who have the same mindset when it comes to having a job. When I was younger, I don’t really agree with them with regards to that matter pero now that I’m old enough, I still don’t agree with them. HAHAHA I’ve been volunteering for a long time already as Rotaractor and eventually has become a regular member as a Rotarian. It didn’t gave me a single penny but the fulfilment that it has given me is just priceless. You know, seeing children with their smiling faces and being able to help the underprivileged community. That cannot be bought!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Volunteering is a fulfilling activity. I used to do it a lot in person, mostly with kids involved or women in prison ministry, but now I switched to supporting campaigns online (like that of my friend’s who is raising funds for students who need a laptop/tablet). Keep it up 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Well first of all, I am so glad you found a way to chase your dream of being a kindergarten teacher even though it isnt for a full time career or even in an actual classroom. To be honest, it doesnt matter how you accomplish your goals as long as you feel satisfied and did something grand and from the sound of it, YOU DID! I loved it when I read that one of the mothers of the kids I engaged with messaged you to tell you how happy she and her kid were because of your volunteering. And it seems like you kept at it on day 2 as well. I hope that you continue to find a way to help others, give back, and satisfy your inner dreams!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. It was great reading about your volunteer experiences! As a volunteer myself, I know how rewarding these experiences can be, and how much they teach us as individuals. It’s great that you loved it, too!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Your story made me miss volunteering and going outreach activities! I just have not enough time for now due to the pandemic and some “future plans” for my fam, but I would really want to experience teaching as well as you do if I had the chance. I really admire people like you for your efforts and patience! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi! If you want I can tell you what NGO I volunteered in. They are always looking for new participants so they would love for you to be a part of it. They are also nice people so your experience will really be worthwhile. By the way, your last sentence was sooooo sweet, themhayonnaise. Really so sweet.

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  8. Your description of your activities is so clear you don’t need the pictures. As a former teacher, I found this super interesting, the way the program was organized, how you felt about it, how the parents responded. You are a talented writer and a thoughtful and creative human. Thank you so much for visiting my blog and following along. Hope to connect more in the future and get better acquainted. Marsha – Always Write. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Marsha! I actually suck at accepting compliments about my writing because, like what I said, it is only seldom that people do it, so I do not really know what else to say. Hoping to read more posts from your blog!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Aww! Thank you so much, Di Hickman! I am really planning on pursuing it, but not anymore through making it my profession. My dad will go nuts when he finds out I am going to be a kindergarten teacher. Lol!

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  9. I really loved to see you have a good experience there!
    I did try to check your About page and couldn’t discern if you were from India or Not, but if you are…
    There’s this NGO called Make A difference which I used to volunteer at. You could perhaps check it out!

    It’s not about Kindergarten though, but surely rewarding as a volunteer!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. So happy for you. Teaching is a noble vocation. Not everyone is cut out to do the job. I am glad you were able to take part in online teaching. I am sure it was a great experience.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. This must have been a great experience for you. It’s really nice to hear you were messaged by one of the mums. It shows what you were doing was appreciated.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lol! I am actually not going to fulfill my dream of becoming a kindergarten teacher. My dad and I talked about it and he told me that a high-paying job is wayyyy better. Nonetheless, I appreciate you referring to me as someone who will be a great teacher. It makes me feel happy. Thank you so much for the comment, kathibbert1 :”)

      Like

  12. This is beautiful. Thank you for sharing your experiences! I was always told to live a life that was more financially lucrative and I did that for a few years after college, but found myself in education. I can say there is nothing more lucrative than the fulfillment of doing what your heart calls!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aww! You are welcome, Sheryl Gim! Thank you so much for checking out my blog. I appreciate it a lot because I just started blogging and knowing that in the eyes of others my blog is great, makes me feel happy. Thank you so much :”)

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Aww! I am so happy that you took time to read my post. I cannot believe you really are a kindergarten teacher, April Haynesworth!!! To be honest, I needed to search what a 4k teacher is since we do not use that term in my country. Lol!

      Like

  13. I’m glad you had the opportunity to be an online teacher. I am a second grade teacher who got to experience teaching online this year. It is different and challenging yet I feel as if we continued to let children know they were cared for and safe during these unpleasant times.

    Liked by 1 person

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