Yesterday was my first official and full day of classes.
05:45 wake up
06:45 leave house
07:00 nursery-grade 4 ESL
08:00 grade 5 – grade 7 ESL
12:00 grade 3 – grade 5 ESL
14:00 – 16:00 theatre club
17:00 grade 8 – grade 10 ESL
This means that my days are very tiering…BUT, and there’s a big BUT, they are so worth all the effort in planning, walking there and energy I use during my lessons.
My day starts with the beautiful walk to Ganganagar, where tiny frogs, colourful butterflies and zooming dragonflies are my companions. Where the grasshoppers happily jump from stone to stone, and where the luscious greens of the rice paddies show me the way to the learning centre.
At this time of day the sun is already up, yet not high enough for it to be extremely hot. At this point in time, the temperate temperatures makes for a beautiful, soothing walk along the dirt road.
Once I get close to town, the children, women, and men greet me warmly with their smiley Namaste’s and as I reach the learning centre I am greeted by a horde of 5 to 10 year olds with bright hello’s. The games that follow seem to be thoroughly enjoyed by the kids for an hour. Now come the older kids. Different children, different games, different topics, but the same enthusiasm. These hours really are enjoyable.Up until now I have been staying until 9:30 instead of 9:00 because the kids want to play the games again and again (Which should be a good sign, no?)
We say our goodbyes and i walk back towards Dhenauji.
So what happened today was that a woman, who was riding her bike to, probably her home, stopped in the middle of the road, said ‘hello, what is your name?’ ‘Angelika’. *smile* ‘Ek chin’ wait, a minute. So I wait as she parks her bicycle under a roof and comes back to me. She walks BACK to where I am going, and where she came from, just to find out what I was doing and how long I would be here and if I liked Nepal.
This is one of the many reasons why I fell in love with Nepal.
Back at home I rest for something like 20 minutes before my Nepali teacher randomly showed up. It was so nice of him! At the end of my last lesson with him he had announced his ‘coming to check on me and my Nepali skills’ after a while. So today was that day. He didn’t really ‘check’ on my language skills. He just wanted to know how I was doing, and if I was enjoying myself and if I remembered anything, and to invite me for chiya at his house. Just like that. Because he liked me. Yea Nepal. 🙂 And it wasn’t one of those ‘if you’re ever in the neighborhood, you can drop by’ kind of invitations either, it was a sincere, honest ‘i will be upset if you don’t come!’ kind of invitation. He gave me a map and everything. So I guess I will have chiya with this lovely man and his wife.
I prepared the lessons for tomorrow and then it was time for my 12 o’clock lesson with the kids of Dhenauji. I thought it would be GREAT to add a couple pages made by the kids to a picture book…but I don’t know if they enjoyed it…to compensate for my misjudged ‘fun’ activity, we played some of the games they wanted to play from yesterday’s lesson.
Drama club was GREAT today. Somehow, there were more kids present than there were on my list (this is also a good sign, no?) and we danced and shouted, and whispered, and laughed, and cried, and ran around, and were confused, and didn’t understand each other, but actually did understand each other and we went through an entire roller-coaster of emotions…since the topic of today was, well, emotions. I really enjoyed it. And on my walk back I couldn’t stop smiling. Even after I reached my room, I couldn’t stop smiling. Have you ever tried drinking water while smiling? Yea..it’s kind of hard. 🙂
One hour later, the girls show up. Oh, what a fun 1.5h. These girls seem to always be up for a laugh. We already have some nicknames for each other…namely rhino, dinosaur and monkey (not everyone has one yet!). Although these have less to do with our looks, and more to do with what we would take with us on a trip (yes..this is from a learning game…).
I could keep writing for hours…I could keep talking about how much teaching really is the right job for me, and that although I sometimes, rather often, have said: ‘bleh! I’m sick of this! I want to do something else! I don’t want to teach! I don’t want to be a teacher for the rest of my life!’, I think, at least for now, it really is the right thing for me. It is the only thing that I do that gives me more energy than it takes away. I am so much more alert, mentally present, and awake after my lessons than I am before. At night however, it’s a different story. I fall into bed at around 9 o’clock and I fall asleep almost immediately.
So, I will stop boring you on this topic. All in all, I’m glad I’m a teacher.