*The below is from GLN Russian teacher Anna Chukhno.
This fall is my third semester teaching Russian at GLN. I have completed a one year Teaching Fellowship Program, and I’m already excited about teaching next semester.
I have lived in Ukraine and Russia for most of my childhood and adolescence. When I look back, my heart is filled with warmth and love toward my people and my country. This special connection with the place where you are born and brought up is probably developed by most people, but it is felt even more strongly when you are away.
After living in the U.S. for nine years I feel this connection even stronger. I’m touched by the generosity, talent and the big heart of my people. By their passion and their strength. By their ability to overcome adversity. Slavic culture is in many ways unique and fascinating and I encourage everyone to learn more about our traditions, but even more so – to experience the exceptional qualities of our people.
When I see a spark in my students’ eyes, realizing that they are really engaged in what they are doing – this is when I feel that my efforts are paying off.
I don’t have a favorite word, but I would like to share an aspect of the Russian language that I absolutely adore – the use of diminutives. Diminutives can be used to express affection and endearment, but also irony. They are often used very creatively, and make speaking the language really fun.
Teaching for GLN makes me conscious about these unique aspects of my language and culture, and I’m really grateful to GLN for the opportunity to share these things with others.