So I feel like I need to write a bit since I haven’t in a while. There haven’t really been any big events. I went to Choyr, the capital of this province, for a teachers’ conference, which wasn’t terribly excited as it was all in Mongolian. There are two volunteers there, one Peace Corps, and one there independently (kind of through his church).
Also, I will be in Choyr when this is sent. I am going in for a Gobi Initiative trade show. Gobi Initiative is a non-profit aimed to help the people of the Gobi to change their lifestyles to become more profitable. There are a lot of events at the trade show, mostly to show off crafts or products that people who have been helped by this organization recently. The other volunteers and I will be teaching English songs and games to kids and computer skills to teachers for two days. Saturday (and possibly Sunday) I will be in UB meeting people from the Asia Foundation and the Mongolian Foundation for Open Society.
Teaching has been fun. It was a little hectic the first week, but it has calmed down considerably. The schedule was constantly changing the first week, making it difficult to know when, who, and where I was teaching. It was all manageable though, I mean after all, speaking English isn’t terribly difficult for me. And, if it wasn’t a little bit crazy, they wouldn’t need me here to help. Now I have a schedule, and am getting to know the classes I will have for the rest of the better. Making longer term plans rather than only concentrating on getting through the current day.
School is a lot of fun. All of the other teachers are very nice including the two other English teachers. Both of them speak pretty good English, which makes life a little easier for me. I’m teaching the most advanced class of English myself, and I’m team teaching 3 other classes the 3 days a week I work. However, just because I only officially teach 4 classes, 3 days a week doesn’t mean that that’s all I teach. I am in the English classes the rest of the time, helping out anyway I can. I also give two different levels of English classes to the teachers (one for beginners and one to the other English teachers).
The kids are great. Every single one stops and says hi, hello, good morning, or how are you to me in the halls, whether it’s the first or 10th time they’ve seen me that day. They all try very hard in class, and are energetic when playing games or studious when learning new words or grammar. I hear whispers of my name when I’m walking to or from school (or the shops); I’ve never been so popular.
-- quick note… in choyr right now. The trade fair is great… Mongolian fashion show, airag drinking contest, etc. lots of fun. Read below, another post with my mailing address and phone number. Take care