Communication, Educational System, Republic of Georgia, Teaching, Weather

Monday Evening News

News Items: New Teaching Strategies, The Limited “Unlimited” Internet Access, Domestic Violence Report, Weather, and Sports

New Teaching Strategies: Today I broke my wild 7th grade class into 2 groups: the 5 smarty-pants who sit in the front rows and then everyone else. I am happy to report that it was a total success in my eyes. I had the kids in front work on reading a long passage in their text books and asked the local English teacher to help them with comprehension and pronunciation. I went and worked in the back of the room with the rest of the class. I quizzed them ruthlessly on the alphabet and was pleasantly surprised at what they do seem to know. Then I broke them into groups and had them work on little games all involving the alphabet in some way. They seemed to enjoy it and were actually engaged the whole time. A minor miracle. And since the smarty-pants were occupied, they had to find their answers elsewhere. New leaders arose. It was great.

Not-So-Unlimited Internet: I bought a theoretically unlimited Internet plan and just found out that it is not so unlimited after all. How Georgian. Guess I need to stop spending hours on YouTube.

Domestic Violence: One of my favorite teachers at the school, the Russian teacher, seemed unusually subdued this morning. She’s usually a big smiler and talker. Not today. I tried to talk to her a bit to cheer her up. She did perk up a bit and I left it at that. Everyone has a bad day sometimes. But at lunch today, it was communicated to me in rudimentary Georgian and gestures that her husband was hitting her over the weekend. I was shocked and very sad. “Ratom? Why?” I asked. Bevri ghvino. A lot of wine. Well that explains it, I suppose. The way men drink here I am almost surprised I have not heard more cases of husbands hitting wives. I love this teacher and her children. I hate hearing that this is happening.

Weather: On the weather front, Georgia has been disgustingly beautiful of late. Warm, sunny, with cool breezes. Cool at night, but long johns not required. I have even lain out on the 2nd story porch. I think I even got a bit sunburned.

Sports: Me? Sports? Hah. I did find out that Georgian children do not run in gym, which I thought was interesting. They usually play volleyball (girls) and soccer (boys). They can play chess in gym. (“You play chess in gym?” I asked incredulously.) I tried to explain that we call gym “P.E.” in America, short for “physical education”. As I was trying to explain this, it dawned on me what a stupid name that is.

I spent most of my Saturday afternoon attempting to walk into town, with the intention of taking pictures along the way. (Before everything is covered with snow.) I made it further than I thought I would, but was very grateful to catch a martshutka into town. I am still learning my camera, so there were some groans of disappointment as I reviewed my pictures. Live and learn.

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5 thoughts on “Monday Evening News

  1. Katie says:

    Thanks for all your posts, Amy! It is so fun to read about what you are doing! Glad to hear that things were going better with classes 🙂

    When will you be back for Christmas? How long do you get for break?

    Miss you! Hope we can chat soon!

    • I think I will be home for Christmas just a few days beforehand. As long as I am home by the 24th, I am okay with it. The program books our tickets and are known to generally be a bit behind on things. I think I’ll be home about 3 weeks.

      Would love to chat! When are good days/times for you? Are you traveling a lot for work?

  2. I’m very excited with you over your successful new teaching strategy! I can completely relate to how triumphant one feels as a teacher in the EFL classroom when the students who are normally overshadowed by the “smarty-pants” finally have a chance to shine. 🙂

    And I agree that “physical education” is a weird name.

    • Hah. Thanks Meghan! Sure you are a teching whiz now after 3 YEARS of practice. Man. Hope to be there someday. (On a side note, in Georgian they don’t say ‘oh man’, they say ‘mother’ or ‘my mother’ which I always think is funny.)

      How are things shaping up for you in the States? Plan to do more teaching or are you done with it?

  3. Jennifer Van Gundy says:

    The best line yet in any of your blogs …. “I tried to explain that we call gym “P.E.” in America, short for “physical education”. As I was trying to explain this, it dawned on me what a stupid name that is.”

    SOooooooooooooooooooooooo funny!!! Love you Amis!!!

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