My kids had a pretty jam-packed summer schedule. They like to learn and they ask for classes that they want to attend, leaving me to juggle the schedule. I tend to agree to their requests since I figure, they won’t be this enthusiastic when they grow older.
This summer, they took up taekwondo, swimming, piano, badminton and Hubby S‘s requirement of Enopi (math) classes. They requested for cooking classes as well which I opted to teach myself since I felt their schedules were way too jammed as it is.
They learned a lot of things this summer… and they had a blast all throughout. I have to admit though the most memorable summer activity they had this summer was a 4-day summer program at TGIFridays.
I admit I’m not a fan of TGIFridays as I prefer Asian food. However, they have a spectacular summer program. Unlike our experience with McDo which was more confusing due to the large number of kids in the program, TGIFridays accept only 10 children maximum which allows the staff to give them more attention and “training”.
The kids are given uniforms and are expected to be at the restaurant at 9:00 in the morning to help set up prior to opening. Upon opening they are given tasks that they must do for their shift which lasts until 3:00 PM. The children are assigned as greeters, servers, or cleaners. Unlike McDonalds where the kids are called upon to work only when parents are there (it’s obvious coz they have no idea what they’re doing when we show up), the children at TGIF are really made to clean and set up and get drinks service for guests which is a great exposure for them. Some guests even allow the kids to take their orders (only the super patient guests agree).
The kids had a lot of fun “working” for those four days in the summer. I’m very thankful to the wait-staff for their patience in teaching the kids what they can and allowing them to try taking on tasks even if the kids probably take twice the time (and messy too) it takes if they did it themselves. Some of the staff even had the generosity to share some of their tips with the children.
The children came away having a lot of fun during that 4-day session, and they are begging to do it again next summer. More importantly, it exposed them to a world that is alien to them since Filipino children tend to be over-protected and sheltered.
I want them to learn that there’s no shame in doing a job and doing it well.
Even though it is but a peek into the world of work, I’m hoping this is a good first step.