Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Well... this has been my life for the past two days. Inventory. They just remodeled my classroom within the last year, so the lab benches are some really beautiful stone material, and they've got a fume hood, gas hookups for the bunson burners, new paint, tile, cabinets and stools. It's really an excellent space! The back room (the doorway of which I am eclipsing in the picture) was full of like... 50 years worth of decaying, scattered lab equipment, chemicals, specimens, etc... so I have made it priority number one to get things organized. I am also interested to know what sorts of resources I have at hand, so that my lesson plans can build out of that knowledge in the next week or so as I develop them more fully.
Today was the first all-teacher workday so I have been meeting lots of new faces. It's been really fun seeing the diverse walks of life represented just on staff. There are representatives from all over the States and Paraguay. The Mid. Grades science teacher is from England and has an awesome accent. I really enjoy them so far, and they seem to enjoy each other as well. This is a plus. I really like to feel that community forming. I know it's early, but it's encouraging to see.
They tell me the kids are generally very well-behaved and hard working, but everyone has a story or two to tell who has been here for any length of time. Many are Asian, specifically Korean and Chinese. They say one of the main problems they have generally is cheating, but especially among this group. I am told it is a cultural difference... that the Asian student's see it more as helping your friends, supporting each other, rather than being dishonest. Hmm...
The alcohol policy and dress codes here are pretty strict. The kids are used to it by now, I guess. It sure will be different from BCS, that's for sure. We are supposed to contact parents, not all of which speak English. That'll be new too. My spanish is improving, but not nearly that good yet. Hmm... generally, I feel incredibly well cared for in the Master's hand, and am still in awe of the perfection of His provision for me thus far in the trip. Continue to pray this week as I plan my lessons for the first few weeks, and finish organizing things in the room. Organization is not my strong suit, but it is a Focus Correction Area for me these first few months.
Overall, I am anticipating. I've got some good resources to work with, and some intriguing ideas to try out, but I am a first year teacher, and am not exempt from the numerous faux pa's that we newbies inevitably seem to make. I love you guys. Skype me!