The Spaces Between Your Fingers

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This was Sandeep's memory of her first day of school. Everyone can relate to those first day jitters. Sandeep remembers this memory vividly because it was the first day she was going to be taught how to speak fluent English. I'm three years younger than Sandeep, so I don't really remember the time period where she wasn't able to speak fluently. I thought this memory of hers was intriguing because she had such a clear and detailed memory of this day.

It was an early Monday morning. Sandeep hardly got any sleep. She had an uneasy, nervous feeling that kept her awake all night; the feeling she describes as “being in the unknown.” Different thoughts and questions raced through her mind, causing her to feel very anxious. 

It was the first day of school for Sandeep. She started a little bit later than the other students. She was still getting acclimated with her new home and family. She felt comfortable and loved by her family right away. But, there was still something missing from that true connection: being able to talk fluently to her family. Conversations were small, and at times not always clear. Trying to connect and truly get to know a person with little dialogue exchange is extremely challenging. It was time for her to go to school so she could easily speak to her family and others. 

When Sandeep walked into the school, she was terrified. Once again in the unknown, she didn’t know what to expect. She and her mother sat in the lobby of the school waiting for the principle to come meet them. Sandeep sat on the comfy couch next to her mom. She looked around the room, pondering the different paintings of prestigious men painted on the walls. “Those men are our past Presidents of our country. You will learn all about them in your class” her mother whispered to her. 

After waiting a few minutes, the principle approached Sandeep and her mother. She had a soft-toned voice, very comforting to Sandeep. “Good morning Sandeep, I am principle Fischer.” Sandeep felt at ease after meeting this woman. She had kind eyes and was very welcoming. "I'm going to introduce you to your special teacher, her name is Ms. Lovett. She will be teaching how to speak English" said Principle Fischer as they slowly walked down the long hallways of the school. As Sandeep passed classroom after classroom, she stopped and looked into each one. All the classrooms were very colorful. They were filled with many decorations for the month of November. The beautiful fall colored leaves were hung from the ceiling. Pictures of a turkey and Native Americans were propped up on the walls. The students sat lively in their seats, eager to hear what their teacher had to say. They seemed excited to learn. 

Once they had arrived to the ESL wing of the building, a woman stood in the door way waiting for Sandeep. "Hi Sandeep, I'm Ms. Lovett. I'm going to be your personal teacher every morning!" Ms. Lovett was just as kind and welcoming as Principle Fischer. Sandeep said her goodbye's to her mother and principle Fischer, and went with Ms. Lovett into the classroom, feeling at ease and comforted by the kind and gentle new teacher. 

First Day of School

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2000
Harrisburg, PA

This was Sandeep's memory of her first day of school. Everyone can relate to those first day jitters. Sandeep remembers this memory vividly because it was the first day she was going to be taught how to speak fluent English. I'm three years younger than Sandeep, so I don't really remember the time period where she wasn't able to speak fluently. I thought this memory of hers was intriguing because she had such a clear and detailed memory of this day.

Decade: 2000s
Rating:
Recorded by julia macaulay on April 29, 2019
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