Friday, February 11, 2011
1st Day of English Class
Last week I started English class at the nearby primary school. I requested a class of 30 P4, P5, P6 students only. This is the last three levels of primary school. I decided to teach on Tuesday and Thursday evenings as an after-school help class. So I arrive on Tuesday evening for my first class. There are at least one hundred children all shouting at the teachers. The teachers have come up with picking a number out of a hat to see what children can be in my class. Because I am early I get to watch this process happen. Let me tell you it was not pretty. I felt so bad, all the kids wanted to be in the class but couldn’t. Do to the wild and craziness and the fact that 10 minutes before class is suppose to start we only have 10 names, the classes has now been shortened to 15. And I am so glad because I do not think I could control 30 students. But I also feel so bad about the students who can’t come but want to. As I start the class I have to take names and kick out all the people on the list. Then later children start climbing through the windows and sneaking into the class. You should think I would notice this but they are skilled. I only noticed that suddenly there are 18 students as opposed to the 15 students on my list. So I have to kick them out. Then I have to bolt the door shut with a desk to keep the kids out. There are still at least 30 kids outside watching and mocking the class. To say it bluntly the first day did not go so well. Good news though, the second day went great. The teachers had already prepared the list, (I have 2 classes one on Tuesdays and one on Thursday) and had the students who were picked already in the class and everyone else had left. There was still a few people outside watching but nothing nearly as noisy and distracting as the first day. It appears the children are used to having white people visit to give out free stuff and all the children really wanted was something from the white visitor. Once they all realized it really was just an English class, people were much less interested. So thanks AID workers for turning this culture into a NGO dependent culture and for just giving out things constantly.