Proud To Be A Volunteer: My First Day Teaching Computer

Thursday, November 17, 2011 Jo Hanniffy 0 Comments

"Volunteers don't get paid, not because they're worthless, but because they're priceless."  ~Sherry Anderson

The training was given a week before the tutors start teaching computer. I was a bit nervous as I haven't done the teaching work before, not to older people especially. The good thing is I've volunteered before in social work where dealing with senior people, so I told myself that I can do this work.

The Co-coordinator in the organisation was also very helpful and encourage us. She explained to us the job might be difficult for us as we'll be dealing with senior people who have bad hearing, which is require us to speak louder and slowly - so must very patient to do this job.

Some people decide to cancel after the training day - maybe knowing that they're not patient enough to do the job, or probably some people just think "who wants to volunteer on this job?" - fortunately, many people out there have good patience (just like me ^^).

The class was divided into two different levels, beginners and follow up. As I wasn't sure about what each level looks like, I started with the beginner level first.

I remember the Co-coordinator told us on the training day: "we know you're all nervous, but believe me that your students are more nervous than you" - so good to know that as at least I'm not the only one who get nervous in here.

The shy student

Each tutor have one student, so there were about 20 people in the class. I was introduced to my student who was I think she's in her middle 60s. She looked very quite and shy, I started the conversation by asking her experience in computer. She didn't speak too much, so her shyness challenged me to speak more.

During the class, my nervous was suddenly disappear, I forgot that I was teaching. Probably because she was a shy woman so that kinda arise my confidence.

We also have 15 minutes for break. Tea and cake were provided during the break. I take the advantage during the break to have more conversation with my student. We share story about our life - she gradually become more relax and open to me.

The teaching class was taking only two and half hours, and it went so quickly, I didn't feel teaching at all and hopefully she enjoyed during the class.

The course is for three weeks, and the class is once for every week. I taught her how to use the Skype on the second week; she looked overwhelming by the fact that technology such a computer could make her able to  see herself through a camera (a very affectionate moment when seeing her amazement to the computer).

Three weeks of my first experience have gone so quickly. My student looked happy and so did I. When I asked her whether she wants to continue again the course, she nodded with a smile.

The first three weeks of the course is done and I've decided to continue volunteering again. As well as the Co-coordinator who seems so happy to hear the news from me, I'm happy and excited to meet the next new student.

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