This may be my shortest blog so far – it’s 8:45 on Friday night and I
am about to fall asleep!
We’ve had some really intensive training sessions this week,
especially with language. On Monday we did two hours of Afrikaans, on
Tuesday we did 3 hours, then Wednesday and Thursday we did four hours
each! When we weren’t doing language training we had two hour long
sessions on things like the Ministry of Education, safety and
security, cross-cultural relationships, and HIV/AIDS.
Given the crazy schedule, I think we’re doing really well. We don’t
feel completely overwhelmed by language, and the other sessions are
generally interactive enough to keep us awake and involved. We get an
hour long break for lunch every day when we can just hang out with the
group. We alternate between bringing a sandwich from home, buying a
sandwich at Pop In (N$6), and on Fridays eating at the American style
Garden Café (to celebrate the end of the week!). Today was the first
time we ate there and I already have my meal choices for the next two
weeks planned out – next week is an omelet, the week after that is a
cheeseburger. They actually have pizza there too, but it costs over
twice as much as we’re allocated for lunch each day. I’ll have to find
a special occasion to splurge on it. =)
Our host family has just grown by one as Benito (our mom’s grandson)
has come to stay with us during the last school term. He’s eight and
adds a totally different dynamic to our quiet, sit in front of the TV
evenings! A lot more Afrikaans floating around too, although he does
know English. He just arrived today and was a little shy of us, so
we’ll see how things go this next week.
Next week will actually be quite the adventure. We’re going to local
schools to observe classes ALL week. I’ll be going to the “colored”
school (my host mom’s words, not mine) and Dylan is going to the
“black” school. My school is combined, which means 1st through 10th
grade, Dylan’s is just primary (up to 6th I think). We’re supposed to
just be observing, doing a couple interviews, evaluating the teaching
styles we see, etc. However, we were just told today that all the
teachers have to take an English competency exam on Tuesday so we may
be asked to “supervise” (ie. teach) lessons that day. Guess we had to
get thrown in sometime!
This weekend we’re looking forward to our host mom teaching us to make
fat cakes. =) We will also be doing laundry again…but I’m trying not
to think about that. We may not have time to use internet again till
next weekend after all our class observation/participation. I’ll let
you know how it goes!