I sat next to a man who trained Iraqi soldiers today at the Temple Terrace library. I didn’t get his name, but he was nice enough to jump in and offer help to one of my students struggling with writing a paper – a standard 5 paragraph essay. As I was about to leave, I thanked him for his help and he said, “Well if I can teach Iraqis in Arabic, I figure I can teach an American student who needs a bit of help.” We had a short discussion about language and the ability of the human mind to learn. I recognized that while his cutting in to offer aid while I was working with a student might have a offended a great many teachers or tutors, I appreciated his willingness to offer help to a stranger, especially a kid that would be likely to write him off regardless of who he was or what his credentials are.
Sometimes – not every day and not always – but sometimes, people are just awesome.