Monday, June 10, 2013


Exam week.
Typical day at school
Sadly school, teaching and education is not much of a priority in Samoa. During exams week it felt even less of a priority than before.
I normally teach 3 hours of classes a day, which is good compared to the 4-5 hours I am there for. During exam week my students are busy with the tests and I can not pull out my reading groups. So, instead I either plan for next term, roam around, read my book or ask teachers what I can do to help them.
Whenever I lock myself in my classroom
I've observed the year 2 teacher  during the first day of exam week. I was in her class typing up some lesson plans while the students finished their exams and sat at their desks. They literally did nothing but sit there. Nothing to read, no games to play just had to sit.
Eventually the students got bored enough to get up and play around, once the class got out of control she stood up with her ruler and pretty much herded them into the corner where they had to sit and again do nothing. I was only in there for 2 hours and she probably had to do this 10 times. She is correcting exams, getting up herding them into the corner and then once again going back to correcting exams.
She must not understand their lack of attention span and amount of energy these kids have. Poor things.
Year 1
Year 1
Later in the week my Pule (Principal) asked me to watch year 1 since the teacher was not there that day. As much as I do not want to babysit I agreed since I was not doing anything else anyway.
Never again at the end of the day I thought to myself.
We colored, sang songs, made noise like rain and I read them stories... That took an hour. We played games and colored some more. It was hard keeping control of the students but at the end of the day I was exhausted yet felt accomplished.
The next day I was asked to watch them again... I felt like I was going to cry! But of course I said yes, I was not doing anything really productive so of course I can help.

Art project
Coloring, more songs, more games and chopping instructions in Samoan I left the room for 5 minutes to come back to chaos!
Students were jumping from desk to desk, some climbing the walls, 8 of them were full on crying as if they just lost a finger or something. I even had one student on MY desk swinging a stick from side to side with a wild look in his eyes yelling, his mouth as wide as it can go screaming at the top of his lungs AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!! I just pictured him yelling, "I AM SPARTAN!!"
I had 28 students all under the age of 6 and they were going wild!
After 2 students got into a fist fight I gave up. I had the other teacher help me manage the chaos. All she had to do was grab the ruler and start walking around. Poor students had fear in their eyes and immanently sat down ready to listen. She did not hit any of them (luckily) but they knew she would. It was an automatic response but not out of respect for the teacher, fear.
Never again do I wish to watch any of the lower grades. Lesson learned.

No comments:

Post a Comment