Testimonial: What a privilege I have.

“Wow! Do I really get to be a part of this?” Jenna asks, delighted she can use her training and talents to teach TCKs.

Do you ever wonder what it would it be like to spend a day or week with Jenna?

“Contrary to what many people might expect, I don’t live a super exciting life,” says Jenna. “Most days look like any other teacher’s day in the U.S. I spend most of my time inside the walls of a school.

“However,” she continues, “there is something special and unique about my students, often called Third Culture Kids (TCKs). Because they’ve traveled to and lived in places few tourists will ever visit, they’re more acquainted with other cultures than most kids, and they tend to be open-minded and resilient.”

Jenna’s students can have unique issues. For example, they experience more transitions than other kids, and transitions can be hard. TCKs might also struggle with their identity: They carry U.S. passports but the U.S. isn’t home—it’s a place they visit once every few years, a place where the culture and people seem foreign to them. They endure the experience but are eager to return to the place in which they’ve grown up, the place their parents work—that’s where home is.

And just like all kids everywhere, TCKs can feel different, lonely, and insecure.  In all of those situations, a teacher can fill a crucial role in guiding and encouraging.

Recently, she heard from a young Korean man who used to attend the school where Jenna teaches. After leaving school, the young man got into trouble and made unwise friendships, but eventually he remembered his school.  “He found intimacy and a foundation  here at our school.” Now that young man is a university student aiming to work with refugees in Africa.

“My school can be a complicated place to work,” Jenna says, “with teachers and students from various cultures (east meets west meets north and south). At times I’ve had doubts and I’ve asked myself, ‘Is this where I should be?’

“But then I remember I need To support and encourage these kids to know that they are amazingly gifted, talented, cross-cultural, and loved.

“What a privilege I have. ”

Can you see yourself teaching TCKs in a place like this? If so contact one of the two individuals listed below.


beverley_harrar@sil.org (Africa)  alan_farlin@sil.org (Asia)

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