So, back to the sweltering classroom. I asked Vanna if he would do the lesson with the students this time (I was curious to see how he'd do and the effort of speaking or writing on the board seemed too great). The song was “Imagine” by John Lennon. The answers i.e. lyrics were on one half of the paper and there was a fill in the gap task on the other. I walked around making sure the students weren’t copying from the lyrics and Vanna did the lesson. He was incredible! He was patient with the students, played the track multiple times so that they could do the activity, challenged the students pronunciation. I was very impressed. After class, I told him how great of a job he did, and he told me, “I like doing songs. It’s easier for me as a teacher, and the student’s really enjoy it.” Giving students exposure to songs helps them tremendously with their listening skills, it’s fun, it’s easy, they are able to recognize native speaker accents, and students at various levels can participate together. At the end of this year, I want to get Vanna a speaker, a sim card to put all of the songs and other audio files on, and a folder containing all of the listening exercises I have made and other volunteers have made as well. I'm looking into doing a small project grant, I've never done this before, so, we'll see how it goes.
At the house, everyone is getting ready for the wedding this week. My older host sister is getting married right here at my host family's house. Everyone is a little stressed. Although no one has come out and said this, I gather from the "just ok" responses in Khmer and how busy everyone is.
Short anecdote: Today my "ming" (= host aunt) told me that she was scared I would get hit by lightning. Now I am scared that I am going to be hit by lightning.
In other news, if everything goes according to plan, I will have a part in writing the national curriculum for grades 7,8, and 9. Our group met for the first time this last week during training, and we have the initial go ahead from the higher ups in the education sector here. Again, we'll see how it goes.
P.S. This is not Cambodia, it's Hawaii.