During my most recent trip to volunteer at the Lexington Public Library, I got to work with a young boy who knew very little English. I did not begin working with him in the customary way in which I would refer to the list of students waiting for help. Instead, his sister, who I had previously helped with homework and even played a few games with, came to me and asked if I could help her little brother. She asked me to help because she knew that I would be able to communicate with him since I had also spoken to her in Spanish before. For homework, the young boy had been assigned a packet of worksheets that varied in subject matter. For example, one page featured addition problems, and the next was a review of important vocabulary words. Also, all the instructions were in Spanish. Doing the homework in Spanish was fun for me but proved to be a challenge as well. At times, the young boy seemed to be confused by the content of the homework even when I was speaking to him in Spanish. Finally, we did manage to finish the entire packet. The completion of his homework was very rewarding to me because I was able to teach the child something in a language that is not my first.
From working with this little boy and many other Hispanic children at the library, I have realized that I want speaking Spanish to be a major part of my career and something I get to use everyday. As a result, I have decided to double major, one of the majors being Spanish. Prior to volunteering at the library, I had no idea what I wanted to major in or what type of career I would like to have. That is still partially true, as I have not yet decided on the other major that will accompany Spanish, but at least this is a good step in the right direction. I am happy to say that my time at the library has caused me to love speaking Spanish even more than I already did!
|a translator working in a court room|
Here is an article that discusses the benefits of being bilingual in many different career fields