It was difficult to believe, but we were heading into our last week in Kosrae. And there was still so much to do! However, we had to take care of one thing that we hadn’t yet – visit Christina in her classroom!
Christina teaches five classes; she gave us the option of coming for the whole day, or coming in for just the last couple (around 11). We had every intention of coming for the whole day, but I was still not feeling quite 100 percent, so we opted for the later time.
We really should have gone in earlier. We hopped on our bikes to ride to school. What started out as sunny weather near the Treelodge turned into a tropical downpour roughly a quarter mile from the school. By the time we got there, we were soaked to the skin; and we could see Christina laughing at us from outside her third floor classroom.
The railing in this picture is blocking the bikes; you can also see that it’s been raining *very* recently.
On the wall she had classroom agreements for each class. I was very impressed by this; I can think of a few teams in the working world that could have used this type of technique.
Soon it was time for class to start, and we got to watch Christina in action.
She started by going over the vocabulary words for the week, and then she introduced Roy and me, and had both of us say a few words to the class. Then she set about the lesson of the day: introducing The Best Part of Me. It’s a photography/poetry project undertaken by a teacher here in the U.S. She had her students choose a body part that was the “best part of them”, and had them write a poem about it. The book is a compilation of those poems and pictures of the students. Christina wanted to have her students complete this project as well.
She read a few of the poems, and then gave the students time to work on their poems in class. While they were working, Roy distributed some of the candy we’d brought with us.
Before we made the trip, we spotted a copy of “Us” magazine in the store that featured the upcoming movie The Hunger Games. Christina had taught the book the previous quarter and it had been very popular with her students. We brought the magazine with us; and Christina kept the copy in her classroom and had hung the posters on the wall.
First, pictures of the teacher at work:
We just met with two classes that day, but it was clear that The Hunger Games magazine was a big hit.
During the day, Christina had an idea. Since I was there with a camera anyway, would I mind taking picture of the students for their own version of The Best Part of Me?
It sounded like so much fun – it was easy to agree. That also meant we were going to school for a couple more days that week!
After class, Roy and I stopped by the hospital (it was across the street from the school) to settle our bill. We found out later that getting 10 days’ worth of antibiotics without paying was very unusual. It’s standard practice to only give locals enough medicine to get them through to the next business day so they can make it to the pharmacy and pay up. However, two days prior on the Saturday they’d given us 10 days all at once.
I took a quick picture of the pharmacy on the way to the cashier.
The total for the antibiotics, the cough syrup, checking in and the doctor visit? The princely sum of $9.00.
Fortunately, this was the last day of my major symptoms, and weather permitting (which it wasn’t always), we had plenty more adventures to go.