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Shane: The Unexpected Teacher

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  Written by Sarah Hansen on 18 Jul 2016

Shane's host mom has a Facebook page for him to document his time while in the US. Take a look! 

I wasn’t sure how it would work. 

We arranged for evaluations of the host kids on their last Saturday.  All the details were perfect.  We had OTs, we had eager students, we had both bilingual Cantonese/English and Mandarin/English speakers to help translate.  We had host kids eager to show off!  But, we didn’t have anyone who knew CSL (Chinese Sign Language).  And, that’s how Jennifer communicates.  We decided to have one of the translators write the directives in Chinese for her, and have her read.  It had to work.

We quickly learned that while Jennifer could read simple Chinese characters, she was having a hard time with more difficult characters and concepts.  She was trying so hard, but wasn’t grasping what we were asking of her.  Oh well, we will continue to try, and do our best, though we could see Jennifer’s frustration, most likely because she could sense she wasn’t getting what we were asking, and she so wanted to please us.

In struts Shane (RK#28699), with a loud ‘HELLO’ and a smile from ear to ear.  My first reaction was to motion for him to ‘be quiet…we are busy.’  He looked at me, then looked at Jennifer.  And then he signed to her.  She smiled.  And did exactly what we had been trying to ask her to do for the past 10 minutes.  Eureka.  He can hear.  He can sign.  We continued the evaluation by having the translator tell Shane what we were asking of Jennifer, and Shane signing to Jennifer our requests.  Jennifer would respond to Shane in sign, and Shane would let us know her thoughts.  This boy.  This orphan.  Had rocked his own evaluation, and was now free to play in the monstrous indoor playground.  But instead he saw his friendneeding help.  And he helped.

Amazing doesn’t even begin to describe this kid.  Shane has been a helper from day one.  From insisting he bring the groceries in (and insisting his host brother help, instead of host Mom), to insisting on making sure host Grandpa was comfortable, to this last week, and insisting on helping his friend Jennifer communicate.  Shane has a heart of gold, and we are still searching high and low for a family to see his heart, to see him, and to say YES. 

Shane  and Jennifer spent the past month in the US through Madison Adoption Associates hosting program.  While we are excited to announce that Jennifer's forever family has been found, Shane still waits.  To learn more about this selfless boy, please email Sarah.




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