Posted by: janpierce | December 11, 2007

Living Large in the Golden Years

img_0601.jpg                                                                                                                                                                                                         As I have now entered into my long-awaited retirement I am convinced that this is a terrific time to begin a new phase of service and important life work.  Our (Roger and my) travels in India have opened up a number of doors for service and my heart has been especially drawn to the children.  Years of experience in school classrooms and especially working with children from many other countries has given me a foundation for teaching English to Indian children.  Thus far my in-country teaching experience has been about 45 minutes of playing a matching game with several groups of four and five year olds.  They were like little sponges soaking up the fun.

Classrooms in India are generally a lot of rote memory and a lot of sitting in rows with arms crossed.  The children aren’t used to American-style teaching in groups of varying sizes,  having several activities going on at once or the concept of free choice.  I will have my hands full in trying out some language experience activities.  I tried to send over the most useful and practical teaching tools from the mountain of donated items.  You just can’t teach about the seasons (they are different there), European fairy tales, (they don’t know about them), family life, (most of them are orphans or semi-orphans).  So many things we see as part of everyday life here are not part of these children’s backgrounds.  I’m inviting you to come along via the blog and share my experiences as I try to navigate the cultural barriers and get some teaching time with groups of children at Dayanilayam.

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