Monday, January 30, 2012

I'm Baaaack!

I can't believe I have only been back in Mombasa for a week.  It feels like I never left.  It's great.  I've pretty much picked up right where I left off, except with brand new volunteers.  (I do miss all of my old friends, but I suppose the new ones are pretty cool, too.)

Things at school are going well so far.  I came back and somehow things were magically better.  One of the teachers left, which is helping, and one of the really great ones has been put in charge of discipline, which is also helping.  The headteacher is still there and he's still a bit...rough around the edges.  I still have some reservations about him being there, but he has been good so far.  I feel like, as long as someone is keeping an eye on him so he can't get out of hand, it'll be fine.  My kids are the same old, cheeky bunch.  Gotta love 'em.

We've had a lot of school improvements over the past two months which make our time on campus so much enjoyable.  We got a new roof, which is amazing.  My room has a clear panel in the new corrugated metal, which makes it a bit brighter and cooler.  It also hopefully won't rain into my classroom anymore.  I can't fully convey how exciting this is, but trust me, it's awesome.  We have also relocated the kindergarten classes to a brand new building next to Olive's church down the road.  Their old classrooms have been converted into a library and a staff room, which is also amazing.  We actually have a place where we can sit and work at school.  I'm hoping that it will help get the local teachers and volunteers interacting more.  It's hard to branch out, but it would be really good if we got better at working as a team.  (This is something I am still working on for myself.)

The boys dig the ditch to lay the cable under the ground.
Right now, Mr. Joseph and the boys in the upper grades are working on getting electricity to the kindergarten rooms so that we can put in a light bulb.  That way the kids can come to read or do homework after dark, since most of them don't have lights in their homes.  It is amazing to me just how transformative such little things can be.  One light bulb is a huge deal.  Some new sheets of corrugated metal can make all the difference in a classroom's conductivity to learning.  I'm glad that I have the chance to really appreciate those things.  It just reminds me of what really matters in a life and how much I actually have.

This week I am starting to teach the new standard 6 along with my old standard 6 (now standard 7) and possibly standard 8.  I'm still working out the timetable to see if it's possible to fit 8 into my schedule.  I'm hoping so.  I feel like we were just maybe starting to get to know each other when I left last year.  Plus, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe was just starting to get good and I feel bad leaving them hanging.

At any rate, it's getting a little busier in the best way.  I'm really enjoying my work and I'm doing my best to make the most of each day that I have here.  I know my 3 months will be over before I know it.

1 comment:

Dianne Butler said...

Love this blog Kim and the improvements at Olives. You're doing an amazing job.