Take Ten Blog of the Week: Valentina

As the school year comes to an end, I am able to sit back and reflect on all the things I was able to experience. One of the most remarkable was Take Ten. This was my first year as part of the Take Ten team, and I honestly do not think it could have gone better. At first, I found the task of teaching a conflict-resolution class to kids intimidating. I had so many questions, such as, how will I engage with them? Will they listen to what I have to say? Will I be able to make a difference in their lives? My doubts went away the moment I met the class I was assigned to teach. Seeing their eager faces, I knew it was not a mistake I was there; I was called to be a positive role model in the lives of these kids, someone they could look up to.

I was able to stay with them for two semesters rather than one, which means we were able to create an even stronger bond. It was not always easy, as sometimes, both the kids and I were tired or not in the best of moods. However, in those moments, I had an amazing Take Ten team behind me to support me, whether it meant brainstorming lessons, games, etc. Their commitment to better these kids lives is commendable and worthy of respect. I truly could not have done it without them.

Now the year is over and I am thankful for all I was able to learn. I learned patience, leadership skills, but I also learned to listen because some of these kids have incredible wisdom and stories worth listening to. I am so blessed to have been able to be part of the team this year, and I eagerly look forward to next year!

-Valentina Marquez-Montero

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