A Tale Of Two Visits


Today we had the pleasure of having one of my former students visit our classroom and talk with my students. Juan is a college freshman now, planning to be a pediatrician by-the-way, and he has the lone distinction of having been taught by my wife in 4th grade, the one year she was at our school, and by me in 5th and 6th grades. His younger sister is in my class now. Juan is possibly the first person in his family ever to graduate from elementary school, and definitely the first to graduate from middle school, high school and attend college where he is a biology major on his way to being a doctor.

He did a fantastic job of explaining to my students what to expect in upcoming years and why doing well in school is so important. Juan was in my class the second year we had our laptops and he is one of the stars of this video – he comes on right after the opening credits.

The class listened and took notes that have already started to become blog posts. Juan shared and I prodded him with questions and then opened it up to the class. They asked questions about his schedule, grades he got each year in high school, which classes gave him the hardest time, and what going to college is like. He really beamed as he explained that in college he is studying his passion (science) and that he revels in being treated as an adult and being responsible for himself. He even touched on how having to speak 2 languages was tough all through school, but now it is a huge advantage, a point I try to make often. Juan has around 10 scholarships and made sure we knew why they were key in him being able to attend school. Just an great experience for my class and I think Juan too (although his sister wasn’t too sure about having him come, but she decided he did good!).

Right on the heels of Juan’s visit were 2 University of Nevada basketball players, Cherlanda, who is the team captain, and Kayla who is a freshman.

Most of the team was visiting our school and I asked Cherlanda and Kayla to come to our class so we could ask them about health, exercise and diet in support of our Reno Bike Project, project. Then I turned it over to the class and they peppered them with questions too. They answered every one with enthusiasm and class (even the ones like, “Have you ever been in a fight or sworn at another player during a game?”).

When they left I explained to the class that we were going to take the next 30 minutes to turn their notes into blog posts. A loud moan went up and I asked incredulously what that was all about!? “Can’t we have more than 30 minutes to write!?” they responded … (Where did I get these guys!!!?). I reluctantly gave in and we spent close to an hour.

Student blog posts should be up early next week.

Learning is messy!

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