The young eyes look intently, trusting fully, hanging on every word. Young minds are keen, absorbing, processing, and soaking up the knowledge and instruction being imparted to them. It is a beautiful thing made increasingly so by the ethnic and, yes, religious diversity, represented among this fresh group of learners.
This is a look inside the door of Hope Academy in Toronto. It is the introduction of something new; something exciting; something that will affect the future. This is a small, yet profound beginning of a dream long in the making.
Many hours have been devoted by board members, excellent teachers, and invaluable volunteers to make this school a reality. Some may wonder why so much time, effort, and funding is being funneled into this small and less than glamorous work.
One key reason is the passion to establish a place of learning where children experience caring, supportive teaching based on high moral standards. The dream and motivation is to provide a place where each student will reach his or her full potential in academic excellence in a positive learning environment.
Hope Academy’s children give us so many reasons to smile, to press on, to remember the goal and mission. The children are so full of potential, excitement and life. They come in all shapes and sizes. Some are sweet and inquisitive; some are caring and exuberant; others are obnoxious and yet still loveable. Each has his or her own skills, talents, and unique contribution to the school community, learning how to relate to peers, teachers, and others.
The children receive a quality education that will give them a firm foundation from which to launch into their future. Some of the Junior Kindergarten students, who, at the beginning of the year were very shy and could not speak English well, are now speaking in clear sentences and interacting well with the other children. Not only are Hope Academy’s children achieving exhilarating academic success, but they are also increasing in the area of interpersonal awareness and sensitivity.
Our goals are being realized. The dreams are becoming reality.
This is something new; something exciting.
This is Hope Academy.
Christi Zekveld was a Volunteer Teacher Assistant at Hope Academy.