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Friday, October 14, 2011

Moving One Day at a Time

These past three weeks have gone by pretty fast even though I haven’t done much except try to rewrite the schedule to no avail.  My second week here, there was a terrible rain storm that flooded the streets and closed the schools for four days and during that week I rewrote the school schedule, which would be different than their current schedule because it would allow students to get out early around 4 pm instead of 4:30 pm or 4:40 pm.  What I did was take out their breaks.  They have two 15 minute breaks (one in the morning and another in the afternoon).  However, this idea is almost shot down by the feedback I got from the teacher survey I passed around last week (my third week). 

The reason for no breaks was to reduce noise from the breaks and have students more in class.  When I was in school between ages 12-16, I never had recess.  However, I did have an hour of Physical Education and that’s what this group needs.  But how do you provide regular physical education when you don’t have adequate space and you have to share the basketball court with the community and another school next door.  For example, the girls only had 20 minutes to practice for their basketball games on Friday, (which they placed third) before they had to give up the court to the community who were just using it for money games (gambling during school hours.)

Teacher’s day and the start of practice for our sports festival took over the third week and the sports festival took over this week as well as I only taught one lesson, but it was very successful and the students enjoyed it.  The lesson was called Human Scrabble where students got into two groups where each student had a letter of the alphabet.  The idea is for the students to come up with multiple words with the letters they have.  One team came up with eleven and the other team had seven.  The best way is for the students to get on the floor and to make words that way or use the chalkboard.  However, I’ve seen better success on the floor.  

Back to the third week, I observed the first day and then the next two days were taken over by Teachers day.  Teachers’ day is big here.  Each female teacher received multiple flowers/roses from students and everyone got out a half day early.  The next day was the same thing all over again, but without the students and in an arena where the teachers were the entertainers singing and dancing all day.  The day after that was back to school, but only half the students were in class; the other half were outside practicing (ahmm, just playing outside) for the sports fest the next week.  The same thing happened this week.  The actual sports fest is only two days, but the school allows them to practice during class for the event.  No wonder these kids can’t read.  They have this ruckus in the background and can’t concentrate.

On Wednesday our team had a practice game against St Joseph, which my team lost to.  We're lucky we didn't play them for real; that team was really good.  The opposing team’s coach said something great to me before the game and said that was that the school I am at is lucky to have me.  I said thank you very much in the local language.  That was great to hear.  I know my school feels the same. 

Yesterday, we played for real and won by 15 against another team.  I am ending this blog early because I just got the notice my computer is running out of battery now.  I'll write again whenever I can.  On Monday I start teaching for real, wish me luck.  Ingat na. (Take Care.)

1 comment:

  1. Steve regarding limited space exercise...look into Tai Chi. It's a great way to exercise.