Monday, March 1, 2010
After the filosofia festinha it was off to Fonte Ines for a dinner with the DECM (Engineering campus) Public Relations students.
Amazing food, acoustic music thanks to some of my students, attempts on my part at dancing...
It's no wonder I was exhausted come Saturday...
After brunch and beach it was time for my last class with the fourth year philosophy students. I've taught them English for two semesters now.
The high note of the class was teaching them about a few of the classic Chinese philosophers in English.
"The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step."
The University decided to extend the semester by two weeks, but only gave professors and students a week notice before doing so. Of course we can rearrange schedules, but seeing as evaluations were already scheduled and in some cases, concluding, we decided to use the last two days of class to implement a project we had planned in January.
As a department we thought it was important to show students the importance of 'creating' and maintaining a learning environment. We thought our students would take better care of the space if they helped to create it. We put aside two days to scrub the classroom to a level of cleanliness that Mr.Clean would be impressed by. We also had students create visuals and posters to implement material development practices that they had learned in their methodology class. Additionally the project gave the two classes (second and third year) a chance to collaborate and work together.
The project went even better than I had expected. Most of our students showed up to participate and the classroom looks like an entirely different space. It's amazing how far a little TLC can go. The students seemed to really enjoy the experience, and I know we, as a department, had an amazing time. It'll be exciting to see how we as the English department and the students continue to develop the space. We have the goal of creating a learning station with reading materials, music, and notices and news.
Our school year was unexpectedly extended a week before, so it wasn't as carefree as I would have preferred, but it Carnaval is always a good time. On Monday after classes I marched with the Uni-CV and university students, watched the nighttime samba groups. My favorite part of Carnaval is on Monday night when the four competing groups do 'samba' in the street. I also like the drum groups. One of my students at the engineering campus is in an all female drum group, and they are always amazing. All in all a good time.
The second year English students presented an information session about Domestic Violence to their third year peers. They worked in groups to present a skit, music, information about victims and abusers, as well as information for support for abuse victims. They did an amazing job. I may or may have teared up a little because I was just so extremely proud of them. Amazing!