Role Reversal

The roles are reversed as soon as I step into the classroom. Suddenly, it’s me feeling small, vulnerable, expectant but completely unsure of myself.


I am so nervous! And even when I think I do know something, actually saying something is just too demanding of a request.

My eyes travel across their faces, across their beautiful complexions. These children’s minds are already machines, being trained to memorize the strokes of a language that I myself am striving to understand. They’re already thinking and breathing and speaking a culture that I have just stepped into.

I have stepped into my students’ world.

My eyes journey across my teacher’s face. She is kind, supportive, and considered a foreigner in my world. I am struck by how other my native tongue and cultural mentality is to the world around me. I bow my mind to the humbling process of assimilation.

This is, in fact, my new culture.

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