REVIEWS AND FEEDBACK:
Billy Ray McClelland) (American):
"It has been fun, informative and an experience I will always cherish. These kids and this time are truly special! I had a most wonderful time. I helped with the Music department. I focused on guitar mostly but was able to help with other aspects as well. Working with a competent teacher was a great experience for me. She really had a finesse with the children and made the music learning fun. I have to say I wouldn't trade my time there for anything!
Chris Hauplfeld (American):
The most memorable moment of the program was when I taught Tyrese, a student suffering from severe palsy, how to play the trombone. Due to his affliction, he was unaccustomed to success with instruments that required precise fingerings. However, when he made his first sounds and began to play the trombone, his face lit up and he was visibly excited. That was rewarding.
My biggest achievement was my instruction of two beginning trombone players named Corbin and Rodney. They had never picked up a trombone previously. They learned much through my guidance, including note names, slide positions, and even scales--fairly advanced for musicians with only a few weeks of experience. They progressed most rapidly, I should think, of all my students, and the skills they acquired during our lessons constitute my biggest achievement.
My most significant impact was probably teaching the students practically. I was assigned several tasks, from photocopying music to building shelves to teaching trombone, piano, and music theory. Out of these, the most helpful and meaningful to the project was certainly teaching the students of Mount Roskill Grammar School how to effectively play their instruments.
Bethan Thomas (British):
"... Tuesday to Friday would be spent teaching music with Robyn (the fantastic music teacher ).In the first four weeks of term we were focusing on the topic of ‘Elastics’ which involved a lot of singing and dancing about lycra, making shapes, playing games etc. Music is the only lesson each week not taught by the children’s form teacher. It is therefore a change for the children and gives the teachers an hour of well earned non contact.
As well as helping Robyn in lessons, we ran two choirs, one for Puriri team which was a rather large group and so more like crowd control at times but incredibly rewarding to listen to their sound and one for Kauri team which was my favourite part of the week – they made such a beautiful sound and were so enthusiastic.
I also ran a special music group for a group of Gifted and Talented children in Rimu team. In these we would sing and play musical games and had great fun learning more about music! Each break time Daniel and I would take ukuleles out into the playground and ‘jam’ with the children. Having never played the ‘Uke’ before coming to New Zealand, many of the children were far better than me but I worked hard and soon became competent enough to teach!
When not at school, our time as volunteers was spent seeing the sights around Auckland such as Devonport, Waiheke Island, Rangitoto, and Mission Bay and experiencing the fantastic Maori culture Auckland has to offer. Once a week we would try and cook a big group meal which was great fun as there was usually about ten to twelve of us. We also went out to various restaurants we had scouted out – recommendations go to Mt Fuji (amazing Japanese place on Queen Street). BK Hostel is a great place to stay, it’s clean and friendly and well situated within Auckland.
All in all I had a fantastic time. The staff are amazing there and I felt immediately welcome. Having worked in a school in England for the rest of my gap year I have observed that there is a much more relaxed attitude to life in New Zealand. The children are amazing and I will remember them and my time teaching forever.
VOLUNTEERING WITH CHILDREN AND VULNERABLE ADULTS
As well as protecting all our volunteers, Budget Volunteering is committed to all our projects and dedicated to practices which protect children and vulnerable adults from harm.
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