Read to Lead Highlight:

December 13th, 2018

 Read to Lead Academy Highlight: 

 Ms. Kiesha's Story

Being employed at the Bethlehem Center has allowed me 

to have a positive impact on the children that are enrolled

 in the Read to Lead program, which is something that I 

never knew I was capable of doing.
When I found out I would be working with the younger 

kids, I was kind of nervous because I’m not a teacher and

 certainly never considered myself to be one.  I am a

 single parent of three, and I grew up/live in the same 

neighborhood as the children who attend the program so I 

didn’t even see myself as role model.

The night before the program was set to begin, I 

wondered how I would be able to connect with the

 children. I was clueless. While on YouTube, I ran across 

an inspiring video from a Gap commercial which aired in

 2017. It was a clip of a third grade teacher, who taught

 her class a mantra titled “Push Through". It was about

 how to rise above and persevere through adversity. I 

watched the video repeatedly because I wanted my three

 kids to learn it. But then something happened. I realized 

that my connection would be that I am a parent and these 

students would become my kids too.

And when you are a parent, you always have your children's 

best interest at heart. This was something that they needed to 

hear. The program began, weeks passed, and the students 

learned  the mantra.

To see and hear them recite this mantra is… amazing! At the 

end of the mantra I usually say, “Well I don’t believe you 

because I can’t hear you” but yesterday, I didn’t say it. You 

know what happened? They asked me did I believe them. I 

jokingly said no and in the loudest voice ever, they repeated 

the mantra with the cutest facial expression, determined to

 prove to me that they can “Push Through”.

Rakiesha Michelle

Kiesha is an after-school teacher for the Bethlehem Center's Read to Lead Academy. She loves teaching the first grade class which includes her daughter, Taylor. Kiesha is currently a student at UTC and is working on a Criminal Justice degree. The Beth is blessed to have a dedicated and loving teacher like Keisha on our team!

Posted by The Beth | Topic: Community

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