20 January 2010

It's Raining At School Today

It's not supposed to be raining. This is the cool, dry season. However, like much of the world, Cambodia also experiences variations to the "normal" weather patterns, and this is one of them. It has been delightfully cool, and the rainy weather does wonders for reducing dust levels, so please don't think I'm complaining. I'm not. Actually, I'm very much enjoying both the coolness and the rain. I just don't like riding my moto in the rain, which doesn't mean I don't do it, just that I don't enjoy it. From a school perspective, it has the added benefit of giving an opportunity to discover rainy weather issues, when we are likely to have many fine days in the near future to fix those things that need fixing! For the kids it didn't really make a lot of difference, except to afterschool pick-up, and even that wasn't too bad, as you can see from the photo above. Yes, that is water lying around the edge of the turf, which is still off limits for another 3-4 weeks. I have no doubt that this rain will do more for establishing the turf than any and all the watering the grounds staff might do.

This afternoon, I discovered that two of my students, while "sliding their water bottles down the handrail" had managed to lose the said waterbottles onto the roof of the changerooms. Unfortunately there is no easy way to get them down. I spoke to the principal about a creative consequence, and so they are going to spend their recess time scrubbing at paint & plaster & other marks on the tiles around the school. Just one recess. Hopefully they won't have too much fun doing it, or it won't be any deterent for the future. Boys will be boys.

With the cool weather, we haven't really needed the airconditioning, but it has been partially fixed. It does at least cool the room now, but the correct lights still aren't coming on, so there's still more work to be done there. As one of the principals said today - "They are new. They should work properly." I live in hope.

Here's just one last fun thing I discovered happening at school yesterday. I was later leaving than I have been, and as I was heading out I noticed lots of small faces inside the guards "office". I was intrigued to see one of our guards was "playing school" with a group of children from the local neighbourhood. Not sure what he was supposed to be doing at that time (distinctly possible it is his "time off") but I mentioned it to the principal today so that maybe we can support & encourage him as a way of reaching out to our neighbours. Our new neighbourhood is definitely a lot less affluent than our old neighbourhood, and this could well be a way of reaching out to them.

Finally, we have another "service" project for 4th grade. Once a fortnight, on a Friday afternoon, we will take some time to do an "emu parade" along the narrow road into the school. If you don't know what an "emu parade" is, then I must be older than I thought. It's what we used to do at school, back when I was in primary school, and the teachers decided that there was way too much litter around the school grounds. I'm not sure why it was an "emu parade" but that's what I remember them being called. Suffice to say, we are going to do our part in keeping the area around our school a pleasant place to be.

OK I'm really going to be now. Good night.


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