Thursday, October 27, 2011


Hi from Ashe High! We're having a break at the moment and since I was too tired yesterday to write an entry to the blog, I thought I could try to do it now. Actually, the class starts in 7 minutes. I've already uploaded some pictures I would like to share with you.
 Here's how they grade their students here. As you can see, you have to get at least 70 to pass.
And I also wanted to write about Ethel's schedule. She only has 4 periods a day. One period is 90 minutes as you can see. What's even better, her first period is planning. That means no students, she just has the time (an hour and a half) to plan her lessons. Amazing! I wish we had something like that in Estonia. Her second period is with 9th graders, the second is with teacher cadets and the fourth with 11th graders.
 That's Ethel teaching :)

On Wednesdays and Thursdays the teacher cadets go to elementary schools in the area. So yesterday we went to see them in Westwood Elementary. That's a really nice school - new and modern.
 School buses at Westwood Elementary.
 A classroom at Westwood Elementary.
 There's a family here that keep buffalo as pets. That's interesting, isn't it? But Ethel told me that's not common at all.
 Me and the teachers here having lunch at the teachers' lounge. Yesterday we went to Subway and had a sandwich for lunch. Today we went to the school cafe and had chicken, broccoli and mashed potatoes and cherry cobbler.

Ethel usually finishes work at 4 pm. She took me to Sarah's classroom (she's a Science teacher here) as I was gonna have dinner at her place. Sarah's really really nice. We drove to her house (about 15 minutes from here) and I met her daughters Amanda and Mary Austin and her husband. Sarah cooked us dinner - meat loaf, mashed potatoes, green beans and cabbage. While we were having dessert - cherry pie and ice cream, Sarah's parents joined us. They were really impressed by the fact that I've learned five foreign languages. We also talked a lot about Estonia and its history.
Sarah's family. I enjoyed the dinner a lot because they were so friendly and interested in my country. I got back to the hotel at around 9 I think because Sarah took me to Walmart.

This morning I got up at 6, which wasn't an easy thing to do at all. During the planning period I got everything ready for the presentation on Estonia I was going to make. We went to the storage room and took some posterboards for the group work I had planned for the 9th graders. As you can see, the teachers have everything they need to make their classes interesting and keep their students motivated.
Then the 9th graders came and I made the presentation. I could use the Smartboard Ether has got in her classroom and I also showed the video I created last week.

Ethel told me I did really well and the students were very interested in Estonia. They asked so many questions. About the weather, the school, the cars we drive, about whether we were religious and so on. They liked Estonian candy I gave them and they behaved really well.
Students working on the poster they had to make.
Another group. There are 22 students in this class.
Here's the main entrance of the school house.
I took the photo today when we went to another elementary school to see what the teacher cadets were doing there.
The hill by the elementary school - Mountainview Elementary - we visited today. It's in a really rural area.

Right now I'm in the class with 11th graders. They started reading Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck. Ethel read them the first chapter. They worked on the vocabulary and took a quiz on the chapter. That's not an easy group and I'm not surprised as it's pretty late already and everybody looks tired.I went and made some copies for Ethel. She has to keep them here for 10 more minutes. Some of them are still busy with the worksheet, others just walk around and look bored. We agreed that I'd tell them about Estonia tomorrow. That's a bit scary but I'll manage... I think.

OK, that's it for today.

1 comment:

  1. Hey, if you get any interesting ideas about Of Mice and Men, then let me know. I teach it to the 12th graders here. :)