A tough week

Trip Start Apr 07, 2008
Trip End Jun 29, 2008

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Flag of Senegal  ,
Monday, April 21, 2008

Loads of you have heard about my week through facebook and stuff but here is an account for those of you who don't really know whats been going on...

Had a really rubbish day on Tuesday at school, basically the teacher told me to prepare a history lesson so I did and nothing else.  When he left the class he didnt tell me how long he was going for or what I should do after.  Turned out he left for 3 hours and I had no way prepared enough stuff so I just didnt know what to do...  The kids find it so hard to grasp activities here cos they have never done em before they literally just copy off the board, so me trying to explain in french when their french aint that good was difficult...on Wednesday one of them asked me what 'As tu des freres ou des soeurs?' meant i was like are you kidding me!?  They sometimes look at me like i*I am an idiot...

So the teacher came back and made me dictate to the class (how fun) and after break he was like what ya gonna do now? (bearing in mind Ive taught all his class so far that day and actually have no idea what was on the syllabus I was like errrrr) So he made me ask em questions from this sheet and they had to reply then thankfully after 10 mins he came back saying the teachers were on strike and cos my class was so noisy they had to go home.

I just feel like the teachers here don't support me or try and help me, they just leave me.  I think that is generalmly the way stuff is done in Senegal schools though

Tuesday afternoon I went to see a project which works with street kids... Looked so much more relaxed and fun and had none of the stress of school.  The school here just has no structure no timetables or anything.  So the guys at the real gap office here said I could try and divide my time between street kids and school.  I de'cided today im doing mornings at school afternoons withy the street kids- get to go on trips to the beach and just play with them and stuff.  But considering now doing less time at shool  and more time with the street kids.

Weds was better, I prepared my lesson well on the family (general conversation in french) worried it was too basic but it was fine.  Did a mind map which kids have never seen before and actually made them think rather than just copying off the board.  Kids said they enjoyed the activities... They dont have much confidence at speaking infront of the class though.

Bad part of today was the headmaster whipping 3 kids in my class right infront of me... I actualy have no idea why they were whipped and had a bit of a mouth of with the headmaster about it cos it really upset me.  Its so against our culture just to do that.  It was awful I could hear the kids crying and telling the headmaster to stop, he whipped one girl 6 times then sent her home and in my eyes they had done nothing wrong.  I was chatting to the kdis after and it really upsets them when someone is whipped in their class... Problem is I have no idea how I can stop it cos i cant really undermine the heads power, i just wanted to grab the whip off him.  He also said it needed to be done cos the kids are like animals and they needed to be taught like that sometimes i was like errr... 

On Thursday I turned up at schoool and was the only teacher there... Turns out the other teachers were on strike... so I got to go home early and went for a lush mexican dinner in a proper posh restaurant with Naomi.  Friday was strike time aswell so I had a day off which I spent playing with Binet's god daughter who is the cutest little girl ever.  She is so cheeky and loved the plastic friut and veg i had, she tried to bitez it and cut it up it was adorable.  Went for an indian meal Friday evening with Brighton and her mates then bar hopping, was a laugh and am now in love with the  French Institut... yummy wine and food... 

Sunday I went to the IFAN museum in centre ville which was pretty good just had a chilled day wandering round a more calm Dakar. 

Love to you all hope you are all good xxxxxxxx 
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