Bridge to India

Invest in a Student, Change a Generation

M is for Music and Math: Don

By Don Rothwell10580946_10204649397143297_7496039387884513102_o

Don with his family and sponsor children in India.

On Tuesday and after dinner around 8:30 PM, I headed down to the “music” room to work on changing out the strings and repairing a couple guitars. As I approached the music room a group of the 10th grade boys saw me and called out “Don, Don please come here.” I joined them in the class room and asked how I could help them. One of the students said, “We want to learn math.” I asked them what they were studying and they pointed to Chapter 4 in the math book – linear equations. I knew I was in trouble at this point, but I begged the question, “What do you want to know” as if I could answer it. After carefully and thoughtfully studying the question for about 2 seconds, I told the boys I could not answer their question.

The students then said, “Teach us anything.” “What is it that you want to know?” I responded. They pointed to the other 21 chapters and said, “Teach us anything from one of these chapters,” that included trigonometry, calculus and other glorious math subjects.

It was amazing to see their passion to learn. They just wanted to learn.

“Boys,” I said to them, “I am going to do you a favor and get my son, Corrin, who can probably help you and answer your questions correctly.” They asked if I would also ask Tarrah and Katie to come down and help. “Okay guys, I will see if they can help; however, I understand Miss Tina has a degree in math so you will get some Math questions answered tonight.”

I was able to recruit Tina, Kristen, Tarrah and Corrin, thus rescuing me from some tough math questions. As I watched the students interact with the StoneBridge team, it quickly became apparent that the guys knew a lot of math already and what they didn’t know, they challenged the group to help them solve. Eventually, math questions gave way to some joking around. Our group wanted to learn how to spell their names in Telugu and they wanted to know each person’s nickname. One of the boys was nicknamed Mahi and Kristen helped explain that Mahi Mahi is the name of a fish in the US. The bottom line, they just wanted to hang out and talk and we just wanted to be there.

The memory of the evening will last a lifetime. The kind you get in India!