30 August 2010

First day

Hooray! I survived the first day of school. OK, after 3 months off it was really hard work. I was woken by the alarm clock at 5.35am this morning, showered, breakfasted over a quiet time, packed my lunch, and was off to school by 6.25am! There was quite a bit of traffic about, but I had a good run, and by 6.50am was getting settled in my classroom. Once my Khmer teaching partner arrived, we went down to the office to collect the rest of our "copying", so I now have a full set of books for Math, Language Arts, and Handwriting. At 7.30am it was downstairs for the singing of the Cambodian national anthem, followed by a  few words from the principal, then off to the classroom. Today was a day for getting routines started, and getting to know the children, and it was challenging. Some of the children were very eager to chatter and so easier to get to know, while others were silent almost all day. It was a day of discovering some of the children's abilities in some areas, and simply trying to get to know them a little. At lunch time I forgot that I was on duty in the playground for the second 20 minutes, but I think that's allowed on the first day (better not forget next Monday) since I got there for most of it! The majority of my children are Khmer, with a few Koreans, and a few of mixed races. Some speak English fluently, while others are still struggling to understand what I say, much less answer questions. I pray that God will help me to understand each of the children, and their individual needs, and to know the best ways to meet those needs. I also pray that He will help me be very patient, gentle and loving with all my students.

Thanks to all those who prayed for me today! As I said yesterday on Facebook, I can only do this in God's strength. In our weakness, He is strong. And now, it's time I reviewed tomorrow's plans, and then it will be off to bed!

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