What’s the best way to spend a Monday morning? Shucking, that’s how! I’m actually getting to the point where I don’t hate it as much as I used to. Definitely still not my favorite task, but I think I would choose it over hoeing now. I’m immune to the grossness of the worms and worm eggs and just steer clear of anything that looks like it might contain an ant farm. Someone else can deal with that.
School went so well! Sosane and Isabel were just observing classes today, and they’re going to take P2 over from me tomorrow. It’s always interesting when an outsider comes in and you get the chance to see things through their eyes. Sosane said something about how I did a good job of managing the classroom, and my reaction was, “huh?” But then I started thinking, and while I wouldn’t say I’m GOOD at managing the kids, I’m definitely way better than I used to be. That was a cool realization, and I’m encouraged by it. I can do this, and one day, I might even feel like I know what I’m doing!
In English, I read a story, and we talked about the animals in it. We’ve been talking about animals for the entire last week since I started with P2, and the kids have actually learned something! It’s so cool when I ask them a question that I know they didn’t used to know the answer to, and now they do because we talked about it. Like I taught them about flamingos last week, and now they know what they look like, that they’re birds, and that birds have wings and feathers. I taught them something!
We had a sort of English/Math overlap after story time because we did a dictation (aka spelling test), and it was all numbers. On Friday, we worked on writing numbers in word form and vice versa, but I realized that they didn’t even know how to spell all of the numbers. The plan for today was to work on the spelling first and then do the exact same thing as Friday because they definitely need to keep practicing.
I really want the kids to at least know the things that are important for life in general, even if they don’t stay in school for much longer or go to college. In math, I think that two of those things are times tables and DEFINITELY knowing how to say numbers. For example, Avy went out to the market recently to check the price on something, and when she asked, the shopkeeper said that it was “two hundred fifty”. She was taken aback because that’s WAY more expensive than the thing should have been. She asked at another shop, and the person said “two hundred” and then showed her a 20. Soo… not two hundred. Twenty. Big difference. When she went back to the first shop and asked to see the bills, the woman showed her a 20 and a 5. Twenty five.
Based on that story, I didn’t feel bad spending another whole class on how to say numbers. It seemed like they were getting the hang of things by the end, so hopefully if any of them ever work in a shop, they can tell the difference between 20 and 200.
For the elective, we talked about body parts. That’s another thing we’ve been working on where I’ve been able to see that they’re actually learning. It’s seriously so cool teaching them something new one day and hearing them repeat it back to you the next.
After school, I spent the rest of the day playing outside. James (one of the new volunteers) and I did a workout together and then he and Nico tried to teach me how to play rugby (it did not go well). Really, I want to get better at soccer while I’m here because currently I’m horrible. Maybe I’ll add acquiring some soccer and rugby skills to my list of goals (other goals: learn Ewe and how to carry things on my head).
James is responsible for making both of the sports goals happen, so good luck to him… I’ll keep you updated. So far, the Ewe is going okay, I haven’t carried anything on my head, and I’m not optimistic about rugby or soccer. Plenty of room for improvement!