Tuesday 09-07-2013

Alice and I were up today at 5:45, since it’s my day to have breakfast duty. Breakfast was scrambled eggs (and toast) and rice cereal with cold milk! After a quick assembly, we were off to first period.

Daniel and I double-checked the worksheet on unit conversions that we were giving our class second period today and also graded homework. Then it was time for maths, which went relatively well today. This was probably one of the hardest maths classes we had to teach because it involved conversions. It was quite the struggle because we weren’t using our “native” conversions (i.e. we were using metres and centimetres instead of inches and feet). Basically, there was a lot Daniel and I had to learn before we could confidently teach it to our kids!

After maths, we decided that instead of giving out detention today, we were going to make the kids stay in during break and do their homework then and there (an idea that none of them seemed to be too pleased with). Normally I would have been fine staying in during break, but today I needed to find Pete to see if we could join his classes to visit a mosque and a temple, so I had to leave Daniel for a bit with the kids begrudgingly finishing their homework.

I quickly returned back to the classroom (and unfortunately wasn’t able to find Pete in the staff room) and after a bit, all the kids finished their homework (and hopefully learned their lesson!) I ran back to the staffroom again to look for Pete, but Daniel ended up calling me to say that I should come to the car park ASAP since all the kids were already on the bus! I made it just in time onto the last bus leaving MaP.

Our first stop on the trip was a temple. Now it’s funny, because when I heard that word temple, I thought we were visiting a Jewish temple, but when Daniel heard “temple” he thought of a Hindu temple. Turns out Daniel was right.

The temple itself was beautiful. You can see some pictures/check out the website here: http://www.iskconcenters.com/gaborone/

Before we could enter the temple, we had to remove our shoes. I felt a little uncomfortable doing this since I wasn’t wearing socks, but a few of the other girls were in the same situation as I was. We then climbed up the stairs and entered a big, beautiful room with a stage to our left and a shrine to our right.

The temple was so beautiful – it seemed like every single colour could be found somewhere, and there were flowers, pictures and other decorations, as well. A man then came out and talked to us for quite some time about Hinduism (which I guess the form 2s are currently studying in history with Pete).

There were many very deep moments, including one time when the man asked for a volunteer. He pointed to different parts of the kid’s body and asked him to say them out loud. “Head” “arm” “leg,” etc. Then he said to the boy, “Where is I?” The boy pointed to his eyes and everyone laughed (including the man) but he was serious. Where is the I? It was a good question, one I’m still not sure if I know the answer to! Another brilliant moment was when he was talking about searching for the answers for hard problems. The man told us a great saying – when you can’t ask Google, ask God.

Then, as if the whole architectural and spiritual experience wasn’t great enough, they gave us apples as we were leaving! We hopped back on the busses and headed to the mosque.

Outside the mosque we also had to take off our shoes. This “presentation” was styled a bit differently, as the Imam here told us to ask our questions as he was going along. We then got to see the ablution facilities, and learned some of the rituals that Muslims do before they pray in the mosque. It was especially neat visiting the mosque today since Ramadan starts tomorrow, so everyone seemed to be preparing for the month of fasting ahead.

By the time we got back to school, we were just in time for lunch (well, actually, we were a bit early, but I wasn’t complaining since I got to beat the rush and also got some cake!) After lunch I had a bit of free time, where I was able to catch up on some blogging.

Later, Alice, Jennifer and I went to cheer on the girl’s football team! They were playing TLC, and ended up winning 4-0. It was a great, MaP-dominated game.

I then headed to the gym and did some stretching, core and a tiny bit of spinning. After showering, it was time for lesson planning, followed by dinner, which was basically chicken nuggets and potatoes.

After that, we then decided that we wanted to watch the form 5 drama show (which was their final assessment for their drama class). There were five 10-minute plays, and the topics ranged from power outages to AIDS. They were all pretty well done, and it was nice to see the large turnout from the MaP community (parents, teachers, and students all came to watch).

After that, Daniel and I finalised our lesson plan, and then I made up another Spanish worksheet for Gape. I’m now starting to teach her verbs and verb conjugations, and I’m hoping she’ll be able to catch on pretty quickly.

During prep, I dropped the worksheet off with Gape and talked to Felicity (the TA) about our mutual love for Beyoncé. After making sure all the girls were in bed at 9:45, I was off to bed myself.

TGT: 1) seeing the amazing mosque and temple 2) yummy breakfast 3) cheering on the girls at the football match

Until next time,
~JK

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