Sister Myrtle Keller, a retired obstetrician and gynecologist, spent 35 years "doctoring" in Africa and along the New Mexico-Mexico border. After retirement she looked around for useful volunteering that matched her own gifts, and found a new calling as an OASIS Tutor
in the Chula Vista, California school district.
“I was born with a love of reading and wanted to make sure it would get passed along to others. Since I've no children of my own, it makes good sense that I pass it along to someone else's child who may be struggling,” says Sr. Keller.
“I take off my hat to both my third graders. Both of them come from homes where there is no English spoken at all. Yet they come to Rosebank every day, hearing English from the moment they come through the gate until they go back home late in the day and both of them do very well with spoken English.”
“I mention this because I have tried (half-heartedly much of the time I have to admit) to learn Swahili, Amharic, Chichewa, Rutoro and finally Spanish without a bit of success. So my admiration for my two students knows no bounds-they may mingle their vowels and some consonants with Spanish pronunciation but the very fact that they can make sense of the English that they're reading gives me goose bumps.”
“OASIS helps me interact with youngsters in a manner that I think is helpful for them for the long haul. I don't get to meet many third graders in my usual circuits.”
She’s an avid student herself in OASIS classes. “I especially enjoy those that help me learn more about myself, sharpen my computer skills, learn more about the world we live in, and pick up some new hobbies.”
"The great thing about OASIS tutors is, each of us comes from a different fork in the road and that is so wonderful. To anyone who might be considering this, I’d say give it a try and see if it may be something useful for YOU and for the youngster whom you are working with!"