Posted on February 6, 2019
In most cases when the word sponsor is thrown around, we think about companies sponsoring large sports events in the hopes to sell products and get more users or huge billboards all around time square drawing for your attention. In “Sponsors of Literacy” by Deborah Brandt, she shows a new type of sponsor called a literacy sponsor. She continues to explain that a sponsor is usually richer, more knowledgeable, and more entrenched than the sponsored. She further explains that sponsors lend their resources or credibility to the sponsored but also stand to gain benefits from their success, whether by direct repayment or, indirectly, by credit of association.
When I first came to America, I did not know a single word of English and it was very hard for me to fit in and interact with others. When time to enter into kindergarten came around, I was forced to join ESL (English Second Language) due to my poor grasp of the language. To me, she was my literacy sponsor, she taught me from the basics of English to the format of the 5-paragraph essay. I still remember how much impact she had in my life, she vouched for my name when other teachers considered for me to repeat the 1st grade. She would buy us snacks or take us out to eat lunch outside of school, she made learning English fun and interesting. But unlike normal sponsors, she didn’t gain anything from teaching me the English language.
Later in my elementary career, I tried to repay her by helping in her events and supporting her in any way possible. I began by helping other Korean kids struggling with English and tried to help them the way that she taught me. Eventually, I moved school districts and I lost contact with her but the way she supported me and the way she helped me through the difficult time of immigrating, keeps her on my mind when I think about my past. I owe her my whole education career in America and I wish one day I could repay her and truly thank her.