Cultivate Kindness by Brianna Mackenzie

12 05 2017

To all family, friends, past champions, and sponsors.

My name is Brianna Mackenzie and I am a first year champion. I am currently in my second year of kinesiology with a focus in exercise science, so teaching is a whole different ballpark for me. I am teaching at Golden Grove Primary School with my wonderful teaching partner Alyssa. Golden Grove has once again returned to the program and I am so proud to be representing this program at the school and love teaching the students life skills through physical education – something that I am so passionate about.

After spending the past semester preparing for this trip, it was surreal to to really be here and start teaching. Starting last week, I was nervous and very unsure of myself but now at the end of our second teaching week, I am a lot more confident and more sure of my decisions. I have always been that person who can never really decide on anything, so this experience has taught me a lot of the importance of going with my gut, and that my first instincts are usually the right ones. I have learned that in order to do something new, and maybe a little scary, you just have to jump right in a do it, not be scared to fail, and be ready to learn.

Today at Golden Grove, our life skill was leadership. We had a P.E class with the grade 6s so it was great to talk with them during the CCR about how they are leaders at their school and how they can be a good leader to the younger students. When my students were describing qualities that a good leader has, one word kept coming up – kindness. The group of students that I was teaching fully believed that in order to be a good leader, you need to be kind. In the next few weeks, I hope to not only be a good, kind leader, but be able to demonstrate to all of the students the importance of kindness. The students here watch our every move and are very observant of us, so if I can show kindness through my leadership, hopefully that will resonate with them and leave them wanting to show others the same.

Everyday I feel overjoyed that I get the opportunity to be apart of these students lives for a little bit. Being able to teach something that it so important, and will hopefully stick with them for the rest of their lives is a feeling that you can’t describe. I absolutely love to be able to sit down with the students, talk with them, and get to know them a little bit more. Yesterday, I was talking to a few girls about the differences between Antigua and Canada and they were all so fascinated with where I live. (and shocked that I don’t grow any coconut trees at my house) This afternoon, a few schools participated in a Talent Show. Watching our students perform was a wonderful way to see them outside of school and develop a deeper connection. The excitement on the students faces to dance and sing was amazing, and the Antiguan culture was over pouring in that room. I already know that when I go back to school, how I go about learning and studying will change, because of each and every student at Golden Grove. Being only halfway through my degree, I now have a push to be the best I can be and whatever I will end up doing. Building these relationships makes more than a good trip or a good story. It builds memories that will last all of us a lifetime and an experience that will want us to leave a little bit more kindness in the world.

Also, happy birthday to our TA Dan! Hope you enjoyed your chocolate cake!

Cheers,

Brianna MacKenzie

Golden Grove Primary


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