I have officially made it to Thailand!!!
It has been pretty amazing so far. I have another great master teacher named Mitch Gerig and am living with wonderful people as well. I’ve met a lot of new people here from all over the world, and they have all been so welcoming. It has made this transition to a new school and a new country seem seamless.
It has been a nice reminder that even in another country, high school students are still pretty much high school students. They are quirky and silly and fun. I am sure that this is going to be another great placement. I start fully teaching 3 Geometry classes on Monday and will take over 2 Algebra II Trig. classes a little later. Although I don’t fully begin until Monday, I have lead a couple enrichment activities for the students.
Here are some pictures…
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With the start of second term just around the corner, it was time for me to hunt down a new planner. Unfortunately, planners are not something you find easily in Thailand (or at all)…perhaps this is a cultural thing and a result of the “Thai time” that I have become oh so accustomed too. However, I did find a nifty monthly calendar booklet. And I suppose it will suit my needs for lesson planning and organizing the unexpected events that my volunteer life consists of (at least until my family sends me a real planner from back home) 😉 . I am a bit of a planning nerd and I LOVE new planners. So being the girl that I am, I hastily opened my new calendar and started to fill out the personal information section (one of my favorite parts!). But this particular calendar went beyond the usual name, address…
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“I had lunch with one of the mums at the orphanage today”. Sounds like an oxymoronic statement if ever there was one! Except when referring to Sovann Komar, the orphanage in Cambodia where I work. I realised that I had been frequently referencing this NGO without providing most the readers of this blog with a thorough overview of this unique enterprise. So here goes:
Sovann Komar, or Golden Children in Khmer, was co-founded in 2003 by the Khmer director, Sothea Arun, and American philanthropist, Elizabeth Ross Johnson. Together these two remarkable individuals have created a beautiful, loving, safe environment within which fifty six children are growing and thriving.
Sovann Komar comprises of ten families – ten groups of children with a real Khmer couple as their adoptive mother and father. The households range in size from nine children to five and these nuclear families each live in beautiful…
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Talking with students in Laos
Luang Prabang in Laos is a beautiful world heritage town and I went there for eight days before journeying to India where I am now, but that’s another story. In Luang Prabang, I was pleased to meet quite a few enthusiastic English students at Big Brother Mouse , an organisation that publishes and distributes books to promote reading in villages. Big Brother Mouse also runs free drop-in English speaking sessions and that’s where I ended up on most days. The sessions are attended by high school and university students as well as monks and working people.
What they have in common is bravery and motivation, and it was marvellous to practice English with them. They actually wrote down word meanings and asked questions. This was a contrast to my last experience in the high school in rural Thailand where no-one ever asked a question and it was rare to find a student who connected…
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