One of the things the veterans of the group kept stressing was, "It will take A LOT of patience!"
...And that much, I thought I understood. At least, conceptually. "Children can be frustrating", or "they will test you and your boundaries"...these are the things that came to mind. Instead, what I'm finding is that I have to be patient with myself and my own abilities--I want to teach them this way, then that way. And on some level, I know the back and forth is inevitable, trial and error is embedded in the process. And it's been difficult to accept that, and I don't think I've grasped it just yet either. But I'm beginning to notice it, because I feel the tension, in myself and sometimes in the students. When I can feel myself fucking up and their frustration growing and growing while I try and figure something out to get them feeling in control again, and it doesn't take me having patience with the student; rather, it's myself that I'm fighting with.
I think I've only just seen tiny little slivers of the process, but I thought I'd write it down, to remember. When the adults say that it takes patience, they are talking about themselves. Not because the children frustrate them, but because they want to teach you so badly and that involves a lot of internal deconstructing, analyzing, and admitting that they don't have a concrete answer. To the most supposed basic task.
I don't know how to teach sounds to this student, or even that one. But I KNOW them. Don't I? Don't I know my letter sounds? How can I really?