This is a guide for my family and friends about my life as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Cape Verde, Africa. I teach English as foreign language to high school students in Boa Vista, Cape Verde. Also as a disclaimer, the comments expressed here are solely of the author and do not represent the United States Peace Corps, the American Government, or any other governing body.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Yes, it's been a while. I've been neglecting my blogging duties. Well, to be honest my life is currently not that interesting. I absolutely love my children's classes and although they leave me exhausted at the end of the day, I really enjoy teaching the kids. My high school students are obviously another matter. They of course leave me exhausted as well, but for very different reasons. It is a mental struggle to be in the high school environment. I find the little children are harder physically to keep up with, but my high schoolers keep me mentally and emotionally drained. So, needless to say, at the end of the day, I all but collapse.

Peace Corps has a program that's called the World Wise School program. It is where each volunteer who chooses to participate is matched up with a teacher from a school in the United States. The teacher uses the volunteer as a tool in her classroom. They exchange letters, photos, and any other relevant information. It is a way for American students to become familiar with other countries and cultures, and helps the volunteer gain perhaps a slightly unique view on their own situation. Well, after 6 months of being at site, I was finally paired up with a class from Las Vegas, Nevada. The teacher teaches 6th grade English and we have decided to set up a little pen pal sort of thing with my eighth graders. It is fairly bad timing, as we are well into the latter end of the school year, and most of you understand how efficient the mail system is here :). I received my first email from the teacher about a week ago, and we have been exchanging emails since about what it is exactly we should incorporate into our classes. Well, for me, th pairing came as quite a surprise, I was given no warning as to when I might receive a match, so I have nearly every class period planned out for the next two weeks (after which the trimester ends, and we go on a two week break before the final one begins). Again, bad timing. But the teacher's emails intrigued me. I didn't get the feeling she had researched Cape Verde all that well. Of course I will be the first to admit that Cape Verde is a slightly out of the way country and not many people have heard of it. But she expected individual photos of all my students and weekly correspondence. It was odd. I was slightly taken aback. Then she thought the students could exchange letters about entertainment in each country. As one of my friends put it: "what, like sitting on the stoop and drinking grogue?" Because that's about it as far as entertainment goes. I know my students will be thrilled to hear about the latest goings on with the likes of 50 Cent and Jean-Claude VanDamme; but somehow, I don't think going on a passeio (leisurely stroll) around your 2,000 person town will thrill the masses of 6th graders at a Las Vegas high school. I just hope they don't write to us about tassels and Chippendale's.

In other news, Leland is going out of town for the weekend to some conference thingie in Praia, so I have the house all to myself. Although that also means I will absolutely bored out of my mind since there is a complete lack of entertainment here in this country. And it's the end of the month so funds are a little tighter of course, which makes culinary endeavors slightly more difficult as well. Oh well, good thing I like to read.


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