Today, i took a stroll through the Old Poway Park where I enjoy the fresh air, beautiful trees, and tranquility. In all of this, I was thinking about my year long experience living in my beloved Valley in South Texas and how many different friends I made just because I spoke a second language. I thought about the students and parents that I was able to serve maybe just a bit better because I understood their language. I was really missing my time in the Rio Grande Valley!
Just then, I saw a man sitting by himself in one of the Old Poway park benches and I approached him. I noticed that he was a Mexican native and I greeted him in Spanish, "Buenos Dias". He smiled and immediately answered back, "Buenos dias, como esta usted?" I could've continued walking, but I was so happy to have this person of my own native country speaking to me taking me back to the Valley for at least a few minutes. Needless to say, I made a new friend, his name is Rufino.
Have you ever just stopped to think about how other cultures communicate in their language and have this amazing ability to make sense of the sounds that they are producing. It's very easy to dismiss the complexity of what it takes for the mind to be able to recognize sounds, turn them into code, and then blend them to create a way of effectively communicating with each other. This is pure magic!
From a professional stand point, it is essential that we are familiar with the language and culture where someone is from in order to fully understand their unique circumstances and situations. I've been around the Filipino culture for over 29 years and I am blessed that I have picked up on their expressions, tonality, and delivery of language. I am grateful that my children are also being exposed to these languages, for it will be of benefit to them in their own journeys as it has been for mine.
I look forward to learning another language and experiencing more magical moments.