I teach English at Conestoga High School. I have been teaching for 16 years. In the summer of 2010, I had the pleasure of teaching at The Heritage Academy. While there, I taught creative writing and poetry. My main focus dealt with having the students perform the poetry as a way to experience the full meaning of words, and the imagery the poets intended. The students’ willingness to perform, and the pure passion and spirit with which they approached each poem, were awe-inspiring. Heritage is such a special place because the students, at all levels, are so willing and eager to learn. Beyond the wonderful students, I was inspired by the amazing commitment of the teachers and staff at Heritage, and the dedication of the Americans who were there to volunteer their time and talents. I was most surprised by the young people, American high school students, who were naturals when it came to the classroom. Their courage to travel, and their willingness to seek out such experiences is truly inspiring.
To those who are interested in exploring the possibility of teaching at Heritage, I must say that “if you believe it, you can achieve it.” When I first learned about Heritage, I was drawn to the wonderful things that are taking place there, but thought I would not be able to volunteer. I have two young sons at home, ages 4 and 6, so it did not seem like the opportune time to leave home for part of the summer. Yet, my wife and our families, were very supportive of my going away for this experience. If you have the desire, make it happen. You will not regret it. I hope to go back in the next few years. Until then, a piece of my heart will always be at Heritage
Michael Trainer, Poetry Teacher, Summer 2010.