Teacher Gifts:
Making Students Believe in Themselves

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Have You Ever Given
Your Teacher a Gift?

Você Já Presenteou
Algum Professor?

Once, I was called in a hurry to substitute an absent teacher.

There were five students in that class. A young woman called my attention by her noticeable interest in learning.

The class was flowing naturally... I played a CD, and asked some follow up questions. They seemed a bit confused. One of them whispered to his classmate: "English is hard, isn’t it?"

Recognizing that as a precious moment to finish this myth, I played again the same track for three more times.

"Wow! Now we understand it!"

"I thought you had changed the track. It is so easy to follow along!"

I can't describe how I felt.

I just invited them to do the same with each track of the CD and moved on.

Class over, I was feeling that satisfaction of a job well done.

Certa vez, fui chamado às pressas para substituir uma professora.

Naquela classe de cinco alunos, uma moça me chamou a atenção em particular por seu notável interesse em aprender.

A aula fluía naturalmente... Toquei um CD, e fiz perguntas de acompanhamento. Eles me pareceram um tanto confusos. Um deles cochichou com o colega: "Inglês é difícil, né?"

Percebendo a preciosidade do momento para derrubar esse mito, toquei de novo o mesmo trecho por mais três vezes.

"Caramba, agora a gente já entende!"

"Pensei que você tivesse trocado de faixa. Tá fácil de acompanhar!"

Nem consigo descrever o que senti.

Convidei-os a que fizessem o mesmo com o restante do CD e seguimos em frente.

Terminada a aula, tive aquela agradável sensação de um serviço bem feito.


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Some Teacher Gifts, That No Money Can Buy...

Alguns Presentes, o Dinheiro Não Poder Comprar...

As I was leaving the classroom, I noticed something different with one of the students. She was trembling in the hall.

I called her by name. She turned around, with tears rolling down her face. I was surprised:

“Something wrong that I said?”

"Yes, it was something that you said, but nothing wrong with that. The words you spoke... For the first time someone made me believe that I can speak English!"

I was speechless.

She left, to wash her face. I got downstairs, trying to hold back the tears...

Payments like that never come in an envelope.

Enquanto saía da sala, notei algo diferente com uma das alunas. Estava sozinha no corredor. Tremia.

Chamei-a pelo nome. Ela virou-se, com as lágrimas a escorrer-lhe pela face. Fiquei surpreso:

"O que foi? Eu disse alguma coisa errada?”

“Foi uma coisa que você disse sim, mas nada de errado. As palavras que você falou... Pela primeira vez alguém me fez acreditar que eu posso falar Inglês!"

Fiquei sem palavras.

Ela foi lavar o rosto. Desci as escadas, tentando segurar as lágrimas...

Pagamentos assim nunca vêm num envelope.

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