02 October 2009

What I'm up to this year... at CEG Kovie

It's been a year since I got to village. Amazing. I'm mid-service and I finally feel like I really have a handle on what I can do, where to get my resources, who are the best local coworkers, etc.
This year I'm teaching English again but only one day per week. Last year I was so adamant that I only wanted my English classes to be considered a "club" for fun. And they were fun, except that because most of the activites I was doing were games and song, I frequently lost control of the classroom and had a hard time settling them down.
This was frustrating and counter-productive as well as disruptive to the other classes.
This year, I am going to offer a more structured lesson plan style of teaching, with fun activities too but I would love to actually help the students succeed in their tests. I'm steering clear of rowdy things like the Hokey Pokey in favor of reading fun stories and doing relevant American vocabulary stuff. It's already going well.
I've also started a Business Club at the same CEG - which, by the way, isa ll gorgeous cement buidling and new desks now - as compared to the palm frond roofs, mud floors and precarious termite-infested desks of last year. Thanks to the National Lottery!
So the Business Club - I've noticed that kids often have a hard time finding money to pay their school fees, so they hang around in the classrooms learning as much as they can up until the last day when fees are due and the Director finally kicks them off campus. I would like to help them find a way to develop their own knowledge in little income-generating activities. Today we played the Marketing Mix game - We talked about the four elements of marketing : product, price, distribution, and promotion.
Then we started this fun little game from a fantastic resource book called Marketing Strategy, part of a series of workbooks for teaching "appropriate business skills for third world women" put out by OEF International. It was fun but chaotic - more than eighty students showed up for the club! I also didn't anticipate that these kids have never played a board game before so tehy didn't quite get the concept of moving along "squares" on the board. Quite a learning experience for me too!

Fun fact:
Just received a bunch of Christmas cards from my Correspondence Match kids in California. Woo hoo! Christmas in September :)

(P.S. My camera is lost, so there probably won't be many more pictures for y'all on my blog. Boo.)

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