Saturday, November 26, 2011

good notes, poor delivery

i'm at GBSS. 10:15am. moral instruction is on now. now-now.

but i'm just from [teaching practice at] the primary school, where things are not moving well. not enough of us TTC teachers. i spend all my time marking lesson notes and little to no time observing or giving feedback. and that's what our students need most!

they just can't seem to deliver their lessons well. the lesson notes are well written. but poor, stiff, passive, forced, uninteresting, un-interactive lessons. anyway, it's only week 1 of teaching practice. by week 2 and then the 2nd and 3rd terms they'll be better, insha'Allah.

i'll continue after this class. this afternoon. still gotta go up to GTTC. Allah ya'een.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

water cycle

Water Cycle (Hydrologic Cycle)
  • What are the 3 phases (states of matter) of "H20"?
    • Liquid = Water
    • Solid = Ice
    • Gas = Vapor

  • How does H20 changes from one to the other?
    • Freezing
    • Evaporation
    • Condensation
    • Melting
"The water cycle involves the alternating of H20 between these 3 states through the processes of evaporation, condensation and melting as H20 passes between oceans, air and land."

Random ordered outline activity! First student do to it right wins a prize!

Group Work (~4 groups)
-each group has H20 cycle diagram
-answer the 3Qs, in their books and present them:
  1. Outline/diagram the H20 cycle
  2. Identify the biotic and abiotic factors involved
  3. How do humans impact this cycle? At which steps? In which ways?

H.W. How might a molecule of H20 that was once in the ocean be part of the meat you eat?


this lesson above was OK. but most students are still confused about #3, human impact on the water cycle. specifically, why/how things like deforestation and pollution affect the cycle. we'll go over that by next week, insha'Allah.

just came back from a moonlight stroll with Maggie. moon almost full. 14th of Ramadan. eve of the 15th. first "dry" [non-rainy] moon in months. since Mali even. speaking of since Mali... PCMO [PC medical officer] called earlier. i tested schisto positive. looks like that trip to Yaounde will be a must. treatment should be simple, insha'Allah.

in other news... teaching practice is on. full days. especially with Ramadan. GPS Group II. GTTC. back and forth. watching students struggle. lesson upon lesson. over-talking. they're not listening. they're not getting it. our teachers not showing up. am i the only one marking lesson notes? 4-6pm daily. little time to rest. no time to cook.

why don't we have more teachers assigned to the school? they're idle. why can't things be more organized? why can't teachers be responsible and professional... let alone organized, effective, productive leaders. is there never a plan of action? a pre-meeting. are we all on the same page? never.

am i going to tell Auntie what her problem is? what our administration's problems are? and the school's? is that my problem? will they listen? do they care? let me stop.

i need to write about some conversations i've had with the shabab [guys; i'm referring to my young muslim male friends in wum]. Bubas and Yusufu. on topics like...
  • ideas of Islamic vs. "secular" education
  • ours being a tradition of knowledge
that's it really.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

kata and cough

kata [mucus; stuffy nose & throat] and cough knocked me out last night. also a lot of food in my belly. i ate hummus and pizza at Maggie's. i'm sure allergies didn't help my kata and cough. that cat disturbs me! could not even breath right when i got home.

the crew came in from their nkambe-nyos-wum trek on wednesday. tired and a little less than positive about their journey/adventure. yet in good spirits. it rained on them the first 2 days/nights. little sleep. lack of food. injuries. gendarmes issues at Lake Nyos. regardless, they're alive to tell about it.

i did Moral Instruction at GBSS on "ramadan and fasting" a couple days ago. went OK, i think. it's too general of a topic. i did "patience" at GHS yesterday. went better. it went well, actually. they're also more used to me.

the Bubas, Yusufu and i are organizing a Qur'an competition, on juzu' 3amma [the last 30th of the Qu'ran]. 4 categories. by the end of Ramadan, insha'Allah. with Qur'ans as prizes. of various sizes. my prediction: that little girl in GHS will win a prize (if not 1st prize) in category 1.

one note... as i was introducing Imam 'Ali's khutba on patience, i asked about the khulafa'/Caliphs. who were they? who led muslims after the Prophet? people were unsure/didn't follow/didn't know... who came after the Prophet in leading the muslims?

finally, one young man raised his hand and said "Shiekh Ahmed Tijani." OH MY LORD! i just moved on with a simple "no, that's not it brother." OH MY LORD! talk about brainwashing–no, wait, that's not fair. just lack of knowledge. unaware. unread. under-educated.

the blame begins with the parents, i think. it's unfortunate. Yusufu was saying the other day after we prayed taraweeh [ramadan evening prayers] at Buba's that he wouldn't know a thing abuot prayer if it hadn't been on his own initiative. that no one at home told him to pray or read.

i asked about muslim girls in school. there are so few of them. 3 in GBSS. 2 in GHS. sad... again, gotta go back to the parents. but can we simply blame them? do they, on their part, know any better? did their parents know any better?

subhan-Allah, how much parents are responsible for... for generations. not just our children, but of entire peoples. alhamdulillah for mine... God bless the. they've done their part. Lord guide and protect us... help us do our part.