AmeriCorps Impact Reflection

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Leigha Critchfield updates positive behavior board at GJSD East Side Elementary School Johnstown, PA

It’s hard to say where or when I have made a profound impact on one of my children at school, but I know that for me I have had many cases where I wonder what kind of impact I am making. One year is such a short amount of time and I am not even sure the children will remember me when I am gone. They live in the here and now. I think the kids make a bigger impact on me. They teach me things about myself every day and help me to realize what areas I would like to grow and work on in myself. I am learning to be more patient and kind, to forgive more easily and love more readily. They can do these things without effort every day and I try to guide and encourage their curiosity and creativity. I have to be patient and understanding not only of them, but their parents. I want to be a better person for them.  Our school can be so chaotic and I hope that I make each child feel like they are not being pushed into the background. I try to listen to everything they say, because what they have to say is important. I want to help them have confidence in themselves and by doing so I am learning how to have it in myself. I think my profound impact is still being realized.

Leigha Critchfield
PMSC AmeriCorps Member
GJSD East Side Elementary
Johnstown, PA